REVIEW: Mourning - Blinded by Hate
Ossuary Industries, 2005
A captivating first effort, Blinded by Hate offers five tracks of mixed-genre madness by New Jersey collective Mourning. For starters, that name... zzz. Not only would it rank among the most hackneyed in metal history (see also: Hate, Crypt and Necro-anything), but frankly I don’t hear a lot of mourning going on here. There’s growling, raging, screaming and flailing, but mourning? Come on now, leave it to the doom and goth camps. Genrewise, this is a down-the-middle (or, I dunno, 60-40?) split between death and black metal, tremolo-picked riffs rubbing shoulders with low-end growls and high-end screams. All are delivered with panache and dexterity, though mildly hobbled by a mix that makes the band sound professional but “unsigned,” if that makes any sense at all. Get ‘em a larger budget! Interesting to note that the band divides its time not only between genres, but song lengths as well. Three of the five hover at or around the four-minute mark, and though they’re hardly conventional by any means, it’s the two seven-minute songs, “Entormented Visions of Domination” and “Destroying the Innocence,” where this band really shines. Just the same, I’m grateful for their sense of restraint and dynamics. “The Ballad of Joel” (a reference to the famous Lisa Steinberg child abuse/murder case in the late ‘80s) is the stinker here, with the band’s adequate musicianship deep-sixed by sub-guttural growls that lapse into deathcore pig squeals. Tsk tsk. Otherwise, though, this is frenzied, melodic and worth hearing. Fans of Necrophobic, Sadistic Intent and early Hypocrisy, take note.