Label: Razor & Tie/Nuclear Blast
Release Date: January 29, 2013
“Stay strong, stay true to yourself” – this has been Hatebreed‘s raison d’être throughout their almost 20-year long career. Establishing itself in that grey area between heavy metal and hardcore punk, their music has always been what we look to for that blazing surge of power and confidence. All this and more is exactly what we receive in their latest offering, The Divinity of Purpose.
Eloquently described by vocalist Jamey Jasta himself as “all pit, no shit”, this album has a noticeable thrash metal flavor to it, especially when compared to their previous self-titled album which had a more mid-tempo hardcore sound. Indeed, it sounds like a throwback to their groundbreaking second album Perseverance.
The album kicks off with the first single “Put It To The Torch”, which steamrolls through your ears with pulverizing guitars, bass, drums and Jasta’s signature monotone roar. The current notion of it recycling the riff from “Live For This” will be dismissed immediately if you just listen more closely. The next track, “Honor Never Dies” continues in the same fiery pace with a little more of the band’s typical hardcore sound.
From there on, the whole album is one loud, charged-up, headstrong message of positive reinforcement, with such songs like “Own Your World”, “Nothing Scars Me” and others having enough gusto to cure worldwide depression. This is also Hatebreed‘s most experimental work yet, with guitar solos and melodic parts, bass solos, crowd chants, numerous punk breakdowns, Jasta’s melodic singing in some sections, and the aforementioned thrash metal influences.
The ironclad unit of Jasta on vocals, Wayne Lozinak and Frank Novinec on guitars, Chris Beattie on bass and Matt Byrne on drums make The Divinity of Purpose their most expansive album yet, all within their classic song format of 3-minute adrenaline bursts.
The closing tracks “Boundless (Time To Murder It)” and “Idolized and Vilified” blaze through in classic Hatebreed fashion, and you might even notice a little experimentation in production if you closely listen to Jasta’s vocals in the former track. Ultimately, this is a satisfying end to an incendiary album.
In summation, The Divinity of Purpose is really one of the band’s strongest releases yet. Even after almost 20 years of hedonistic anger, they remain fresh, fast and furious. Think “aging gracefully” applies here? Think again.
Recommended Songs: “Put It To The Torch”, “Boundless (Time To Murder It)”
Reviewed by: Sairaj Kamath