(8/10) ‘In Absence’ is an interesting EP in many aspects. The band that releases this EP is Hespera, being the brainchild of Cole Martinez and Matt Silac. The two guys are the songwriters of the six songs that made it on this disc.
Hespera is about melodic death metal, quite good melodic death metal I have to say. An important asset of the release is the songs that are all of high quality. The really aggressive opener ‘”Solace in Solitude’ speaks a clear language. This EP is not meant to take prisoners. These songs are very well-crafted melodic death metal tracks that belong to the best I have heard for quite a while.
Compared to the opener the next tune, ‘Miles Away’, puts melodies a bit more into the spotlight before the high speed beginning of ‘Remnants of Existence’ swipes away the illusion that this release could turn into a softer one. Raging metal is what gets out of the speaker before ‘Absolved’ slows down tempo but surely not intensity.
‘Endless’ combines harsh guitars with a heavy but more melodic chorus and it’s keyboards that continue, introducing the title track. ‘In Absence’ is aggressive and also stands for the melodic aspects of Hespera, all kept together by a merciless beat that adds the necessary drive to things.
Talking about the rhythm section leads us to the rest of the band, next to the two founders. No less than Dirk Verbeuren added the drums to this release, forming together with bassist Andrew Lenthe the power-giving engine of Hespera. Last but not least it’s the vocals that makes a difference too and in case you have the idea of having heard this voice earlier you’ re damn right. It’s Soilwork / The Night Flight Orchestra frontman Björn “Speed” Strid that sings, shouts and growls on a release that can be compared with Soilwork in their ‘Natural Born Chaos’-days. No doubt, Hespera is far more than just a Soilwork copycat, but there is quite some Gothenburg-style included in each of the six songs.
For me, this release came a bit from left-field, meaning that I didn’t really had it on my metal radar until a few days ago. But as soon as I listened to the first song I was impressed and the same might be that case for you. Check out this 6-track EP. It’s very worth it.
- Solace in Solitude
- Miles Away
- Remnants of Existence
- In Absence
Label: Seeing Red Records
Genre: Melodic Death Metal
Release Date EU: August 31st, 2018