Dennis : Hellcraft is a five-piece Ukrainian death metal band hailing from Berdyansk, a resort city only 50 kilometers from the Donetsk warzone. With ‘Apotheosis of War’ they deliver their third full length album, after releasing ‘Anthology of Terror’ in 2010 and ‘Tyranny of the Middle Ages’ in 2012. I am not sure if this album is named after or inspired by famous Russian war artist and veteran Vasily Vereshchagin (October 26, 1842 – April 13, 1904) who created a painting depicting a pile of skulls naming it the ‘Apotheosis of War’ and dedicating it to all conquerors, past, present and to come . The artwork for Hellcraft’s third album shows some similarities with a pile of skulls incorporated in the artwork, which was designed by Russian artist Yuri Shumbassov.
Death metal is Hellcraft’s trade and they sound solid as hell. I am hearing some Vader and some Vomitory and maybe even Monstrosity influences, and if you mix these three bands up, you’ll get something that sounds like Hellcraft, but then with mostly Ukrainian lyrics. Fun fact about this album is that Sinister singer Aad Kloosterwaard contributed some punishing guest vocals to the title song of the album. With a total playing time of just over thirty minutes this album is short and sweet. Solid and well executed death metal from Ukraine.