Hey there tech fiends, it's that time of the week again. Before we dive into today's focus, here's the usual reminder that if you're looking for more sick music, all prior editions of this series can be perused here.
Hadal Maw is one of my favorite technical death metal bands from Australia, and this is hardly the first time I’ve covered them. Their fascinating 2014 debut, Senium hooked me instantly and even now stands the test of time as one hell of a debut album experience. The group’s penchant for technical death metal driven by extreme heaviness and groove colliding with unearthly dissonance and some progressive inclinations is always refreshing to hear and satisfies multiple itches for hardcore death metal fanatics.
It’s a testament to their well developed musical style and abilities as musicians to be able to keep the ship moving forwards with fresh variations on their sound and framework with each new release. Last year’s album, Olm, which I did the early stream for in this column, saw the group taking a somewhat experimental, slower overall tempo-wise, and less straightforward tact, marrying that with an increase from their already heavily present groove element. Now, just one year after Olm, Hadal Maw has made a surprisingly quick turnaround and are about to drop a new EP called Charlatan. We’ve got the full early stream of Charlatan for you below ahead of its official release this Friday, August 1st.
The consensus on Olm seemed to be split in the metal community, which is understandable as it really did switch things up quite a bit from what fans and critics came to expect from the band's music after Senium which was overall much faster and also more straightforward in some senses. Leaving a lot of us wondering in what direction Hadal Maw would go from there? The answer is a bit of looking forwards while returning back to a lot of what made Senium so great at the same time such as it's minimalist yet effective lead guitar approach, massive atmospheric builds and pauses, and a proclivity for murderous straightforward savagery that barrels forwards like the bastard spawn of Hate Eternal gone Gojira and Decapitated.
In many ways, the spirit and approach on Charlatan remind me more of Senium then Olm, yet it retains the enhanced groove, experimental, and prog inclinations from that release into their newest music. The result should keep longtime fans happy since Charlatan is chock full of devastating death metal gone a cybernetic and mechanical path, and holy fuck is it ever awesome. I'd argue that it's precisely because of the group's somewhat unorthodox sonic makeup and a quite atypical approach to technical death metal that the music on Charlatan comes across as intriguing and memorable as it does from start to finish. So if you dig what you're hearing, you can pre-order Charlatan through the Hadal Maw Bandcamp page. Be sure to follow the band over on the Hadal Maw Facebook page as well.