Review HEMELBESTORMER ‘Collide & Merge’

Hemelbestormer means ‘stormer of heaven’ and is the band name of a Belgium metal band that founded in 2012. The band premiered with ‘Portals’ in 2014 and released two additional longplayers to date.

With having three records on their list of achievements, Hemelbestormer has finished work on ‘Collide & Merge’, the next step of the band. The quartet plays an interesting mélange of various styles. Mainly based on post-rock, the quartet also uses references of sludge, ambient and doom with a few black metal moments being embedded too.

Hemelbestormer’s focus goes to the music which the band wants to enrich with quality rather than quantity. Live shows, mainly lighted very minimalistic, allow fans to dive into the soundscape the quartet creates. What works live, goes for albums too. As the earlier releases also ‘Collide & Merge’ is an album that can’t be listened to as a sidetrack while doing something else. There is too much songwriting richness included and too much feel weaved into the songs, both demanding attention and focus for the listener. Otherwise songs like the massive opener ‘Collapsar’ and the intense ‘Decoding the Light Vault’ will not unfold their full potential.

Within the loud and powerful songs some calmer moments like the title track as well as the atmospheric ‘Portals III’ provide a great flow through the record that shows a creativity and braveness to combine elements to an exciting sounding total. Hemelbestormer let genre collide and merge, as the title states.

‘Collide & Merge’ is a dark album. It includes melancholy and spreads a gloomy vibe. Still, it isn’t a record that is depressing or lamenting. The power, created by the band, is dynamic and addictive which makes listening to the album to a positive experience.

Rating: 8 out of 10.

Tracklist:

  1. Collapsar
  2. In Praise of Sun
  3. Quasar
  4. Collide & Merge
  5. Void
  6. Decoding the Light Vault
  7. Portals III

Label: Van Records

Genre: Post-Rock

Release Date EU: November 19th, 2021

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