Taking inspiration from the land of which they hail and bringing the dark forestial allure into their doom laced with sludge, classic rock, and psych, British Columbia trio Hail the Void have returned with their second full length release Memento Mori. Following their 2020 self-titled self-released debut, the band is now under Ripple Music after being hand picked by current Ozzy Osbourne bassist Rob “Blasko” Nicholson. Pushing their boundaries and expanding on their already established sound, these eight tracks are full of atmospheric passages, hazy doom riffs, wailing vocals, crashing drums, and killer guitar solos. The consistent flow of each makes for a mellow and expertly crafted album.
Memento Mori opens with a short atmospheric track full of far away vocals, screeching feedback, and echoing whispers setting an eerie mood before diving into the music. The following track “Writing On The Wall” is one of my favorites. It is a heavy doom track full of fuzzy riffs and grunge vocals. This vocal style is heard in several tracks alongside more classic rock instrumental influences bringing some retro vibes into the album. The first single released from Memento Mori was “High and Rising” which opens with rainfall, an ominous bass line, and the sound of a shovel scraping against the ground before breaking into riffs and thunderous drumming. This track features some psychedelic instrumental passages that are hypnotic and impressively composed. The second single released was “Talking To The Dead” which shows off a harsher side of the band with picked up tempos, more aggressive vocals, and infectious riffs.
Released alongside these first two singles, corresponding cinematic music videos also debuted. Both act as short films shot in black and white in the woodlands of British Columbia. These chilling videos were artistically created and the movements are slightly slowed which sync perfectly with the music and add a layer of suspense. The video for “Talking To The Dead” perfectly captures the theme of the album, ties in the album art, and acts as a memento mori itself. Both videos tell a story and a thriller movie feel to them.
I was drawn to this album by the haunting cover art prior to hearing the music. Listening to the single releases cemented me grabbing Memento Mori to review. This has been my first experience with Hail the Void but listening to their sophomore album inspired me to check out their debut. Both are solid releases with Memento Mori taking on a darker theme and mood with matching melancholy melodies and more passionate vocals. I am eager to follow the trio’s journey and see what they create next. If Balsko’s seal of approval was not enough to urge you to listen to this album, I hope my words gave the extra push to check out Hail the Void and Memento Mori.
Memento Mori is available now on Ripple Music. For more information on Hail the Void visit their Facebook Page.
Got it last week…