Nima : These American thrashers have been around for a some years now and have already released three good and strong albums in the past decade. The band has taken a big step forward with each album and has also become more and more technical. Although the music of this quartet certainly appeals to me and the band definitely possesses enough talent and quality, Hatchet has never fully convinced me. This is partly due to the fact that the music simply sounds too anonymous, but mainly due to the lack of highlights and most of all memorability.
The fourth studio album, 'Dying To Exist', which will be released shortly more or less continues where its predecessor, 'Fear Beyond Lunacy' (2015) left off. The old-fashioned thrash that is especially reminiscent of fellow trashers Havok, but also Bonded By Blood, Fueled By Fire, Evile and consorts still serves as the main ingredient. The upward trend in songwriting and especially technique is also continued. Technically and musically this is definitely the band's strongest work to date and the instrumental skills of the men are certainly admirable. Unfortunately, for me, that is at the expense of the focus and with that the spontaneity. Not that they have suddenly become progressive or soft, because the album definitely doesn’t lack fast thrashing and pounding. And yes, it all sounds pretty tasty and musically the band leaves little to be desired. It’s just that there is simply too much going on in order to keep you focused so that – even after several listens – the songs will pass without leaving a lasting impression. As a result, the previously mentioned lack of memorability is also the case here.
What also appeals to me less is the fact that the music here and there takes a more modern turn. They often remind me of old In Flames and similar Swedish acts, but also of a band like The Black Dahlia Murder for example, which for me is an unpleasant surprise and an unwelcome turn. But that is a matter of taste. It is mainly that lack of memorable pieces, and the fact that despite the technique and the musical outings it all still sounds very anonymous, that the gentlemen again don’t fully convince me. All in all this is a tasty thrasher, no more and no less.