Hadal – Painful Shadow

We find ourselves talking about Hadal‘s second full length, Painful Shadow, released by Sliptrick Records last March, with a certain delay. Meanwhile, it must be said that the interpretation of doom by Hadal is quite original, not so much for the search of improbable experiments, but for the successful mixture with sounds related to the best alternative rock, with an eye to the historic scene in Seattle: something already done very well this year by the Croatian Old Night, but starting from a base close to the traditional doom instead of gothic death doom, in the ropes instead of the geographically close band from Italy. The result is a batch of songs that surprise for their freshness and catchiness, without ever appearing obvious, so much so that the title track, also chosen to be combined with a video, is not even the most enjoyable song, but what convinces is the overall depth of an album that, as we have been able to see directly, proves to be penetrating even in its live performance. The Trieste band wants to underline how their sound is the result of the confluence of various musical styles that, united in a truly masterful way, form the sound fabric of Painful Shadow: thanks to this, the ten tracks plus intros appear all firmly linked together despite the different nuances give each of them a strong identity. Without wishing to diminish the excellent work of the remaining members of the band, all experienced musicians and as such perfectly at ease at every juncture, the vocal performance of Alberto Esposito is crucial to the success of the work. He’s really good and expressive with the growl but above all with a deep clean voice, versatile and up to the situation even in live performances, which is not something to be taken for granted (those who have recently seen Paradise Lost live unfortunately know what I mean). By the way, having said that at the level of influences the just mentioned masters of Halifax surely have a certain weight, Hadal‘s skill lies in not focusing on a specific point of reference, so in their sound is not difficult to find wise doses of all the best that rock and metal with darker and more romantic veins have offered in recent decades (Moonspell, Type 0 Negative, Septic Flesh era Revolution DNA, but also Alice In Chains and Pearl Jam for the grunge side and traces of Disturbed and Alter Bridge for alternative rock / metal). In short, those who missed out (as we did) on such a great album at the time of its release have all the time (and the convenience) to make up for it, letting themselves be conquered by a series of songs among which it’s really hard to find one that stands out from the rest: forced to choose, I opt for Slow Violence, a very strong track with a chorus full of a certain melancholy, for Nocturnal, that since the title, similar to one of the most famous songs of the band from Lusitania, shows welcome references to Moonspell, and for Illusion, which combines a guitar work with a great evocative potential with a chorus legitimately son of the most modern metal. Painful Shadow is an album that has all the characteristics to open up to a much wider audience than just doom fans, thanks to a great freshness and a series of songs that imprint themselves with a certain ease in the memory without ever sacrificing their depth: in short, the definition of a work with almost no weak points.

2017 – Sliptrick Records