Hirax should be one of the most respected names in metal. Despite only having a few full-lengths amongst a legion of EP’s, splits, and other releases, they always deliver quality. I have yet to come across a Hirax release I didn’t enjoy. In 2014, with their new album “Immortal Legacy”, the band further cements their spot in thrash metal history with yet another raging disc of tunes. Throughout the entire release there is not a single moment of compromise or disappointment; the band provides plenty of material to headbang to, and even when they do leave the thrash realm momentarily (see “Atlantis (Journey to Atlantis)”) they do so to create something interesting.
Most of the tracks here are pretty speedy. The band doesn’t break into insane 250 BPM type songs, but they provide more than enough fury to mosh to. Songs like “Black Smoke” and “Immortal Legacy” do a stellar job of combining hard-hitting riffs with memorable vocal lines. As you might imagine, Katon De Pena is still the driving force of this band. Over the years his vocals have become a bit more reined in, but that’s more because he learned how to sing rather than because his abilities are diminishing. In fact, he sounds better on “Immortal Legacy” than any other Hirax release. He can push his voice into overdrive and deliver huge screams, but his singing voice is fantastic too. It is his ability to combine these two sounds seamlessly into any song that is really impressive. It prevents the tracks from getting stale because Katon can mix up his vocals seemingly at will.
It’s hard to criticize “Immortal Legacy”. There are perhaps certain tracks here that are a bit weaker, especially on the second half of the album, but there is nothing that is outright bad. The production is solid, as nobody is fighting for attention. The guitar solos are louder than everything else (as they should be), and are quite plentiful as well. Even though there are 12 tracks, there are a few shorter tracks to break things up, and the album is over surprisingly quickly. Overall, “Immortal Legacy” is an impressive record. While Hirax doesn’t pump out albums as quickly as all of their peers, they always deliver when they do. This album was written for fans of thrash by fans of thrash. Katon knows this genre inside out, and once again, he has proven he’s among the best at it.
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"Victims of the Dead"
4.25/5 or 85%.
Written by Scott