"Bleeding the New Apocalypse"

By Dr. Abner Mality

I don't know quite what to make of this very prolific Swedish act. They have pretty much created their own musical universe to play in that nobody else has jumped into, which is a very strong sign of originality and uniqueness. They create long, LONG epics combining brain-crushing Swedish death metal with beautiful Gothic soundscapes and industrial touches. A mixture of grinding growls and operatic female singing relate blasphemous tales of apocalyptic doom and heavenly destruction.

That's the Project Hate template and they stick to it. They stick to it so much that their albums are virtually interchangeable except for changes in the female vocalist. Plus, listening to "Bleeding The New Apocalypse" is just as exhausting as all their other albums, as the brain struggles to take in these lengthy diatribes. Yet the band is capable of great passion and moments of true beauty. We do get a new lady on vocals here and her addition is a welcome one. Ruby Roque has a much more full-bodied and energetic voice than the rather thin and ethereal tones of her predecessor, Jo Enckel. She belts it out with full force and can stand up to the archetypal death grunts of Jorgen Sandstrom. This is the best one-two punch in The Project Hate's history.

Six tracks clocking in at exactly an hour of musical apocalypse are on tap. You'll find the same deft combination of elements as on all previous albums, but I do have to mention "Summoning Majestic War" as being particularly strong and of the best PH MCMXCIX tunes ever. Listening to this album straight through is mind-numbing...I get more out of it by breaking it up into 2 tracks at a time.

I wish these guys would experiment a bit more, with maybe a shorter blasting track or one with strictly Ruby on vocals or maybe even one that's completely industrial. They have mastered their specialty, but just seem too narrow in their approach.