Hell Militia is introduced to us from France (at least on this webzine), with a long career on stage since 2001. It took them a decade to put out their fourth full-length album, since the previous “Jacob’s Ladder” was released in 2012. But they returned in order to spread more noise to the world that will hear them.
And I do not say “noise” metaphorically but literally. First of all, let me say that the band claims to play necro black metal. And when you see such meaningless statements, you know that there is some cheesy situation going on. And unfortunately, just a few seconds from “Hollow Void” are enough to confirm it. In my personal opinion, Hell Militia do what I dislike in the modern extreme metal scene.
And these are basically two things. The first has to do with the music. The black metal of the French is of course not original but it is not something excellent either. The up-tempo moments are monotonous with tedious drumming that makes you wonder when it will stop. At least there are some mid-tempo breaks which show that they worked a lot better there but the rest is a pointless aggression just for the sake of the aggression. Their musicianship is not completely absent, but it is buried by the rest.
The second has to do with the production. Here we have another case of old-school nostalgia who deliberately choose noisy production to catch a feeling from an era that has disappeared for years. Especially the vocals of the singer have an unacceptable and meaningless distortion that sound as if they are coming out of a chewed tape. Very annoying, they make “Hollow Void” sound like martyrdom. He honestly makes me want to give him some lozenge for his throat.
I do not need to analyze anything more about this release. If they focus on writing music without meaningless blasting just to look extreme and evil and try to have a better production, they might be able to make something decent. The paradox is that all the old bands that have shaped the extreme sound, choose modern and clean productions for years while so many and those who are influenced by them prefer this noise. I honestly cannot understand it. Boring and tedious album.