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REVIEW: Hell Within - Shadows Of Vanity Lifeforce Records, 2007
Hell Within - Shadows Of Vanity - cover art Hell Within have pulled an Avenged Sevenfold on their last album, and no, it's not for the worst. This year (2007) seems to be the year many bands, new and old, are reinventing themselves, and Hell Within is no exception to this disease.

For those unfamiliar with the Avenged Sevenfold syndrome, it is when a band does a complete one eighty and practically changes their sound from one style to another. Avenged Sevenfold is well noted for this from going metalcore to mainstream [American] power metal. Hell Within has taken this concept, but executed the right way. Compared to their debut, it's obvious the band has matured and are going on a new path with even faster, insaner songs than their debut. The music sounds sharper, and much tighter than anything before. It does hold a certain glam element (to try to describe it) and does, in fact, sound completely different.

The vocalist has made a huge improvement as well, and is probably the most shocking on this CD. The vocals are much deeper, the high pitched are perfect, and the singing is simply amazing and all over the place. The band no longer seems to be plagued with the "every chorus needs singing" syndrome, as a good majority of the album is actually sung instead of screamed. While this may sound bad, it really isn't. His voice perfectly suits the insanity of the music with screaming vocals backing the singing throughout the CD, giving a much more sharper edge to the songs.

"Shadows Of Vanity" is exactly what the melodic death scene needs to revive it. It's a breath of fresh air in the group and easily raises the bar of what the style should sound like. With amazing solos, tight and insane music, and vocals that would make any singer jealous as hell, this release is one of those kick ass CDs that will slip under the radar this month due to a lack of proper promotion. If you buy one album this month, make "Shadows Of Vanity" that one.

written by Jason Thomas Weiss

1. Shadows Of Vanity
2. My Exit In Red
3. Lay Down Your Arms
4. The Spiral
5. In The Absence Of Fire
6. Between The Dead And The Deceived
7. For The Taking
8. Merciless
9. A Silent Prayer For The Haunted

Playing time: 33.51

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