HaatE is a one-man black metal project from Italy, at least for people with compulsive classification syndrome. For me, this is a high quality atmospheric black ambient act, often using distorted guitars and shrieking vocals to enhance the bleak atmosphere. The level of musical craftsmanship is very high and the overall atmosphere is very dark. In that aspect, HaatE reminds me of bands like Vinterriket or Paysage D'Hiver. Wreath, the sole member behind this project, claims he's influenced by Lustre and Wolves In The Throne Room, and that is exactly where I would place this album on my shelf.
'Breed: The Forlorn Majesty' contains three immense anthems. All of them (except the closer) incorporate similar elements like elaborate soundscapes and keyboards, crushing guitars and mainly slow but solid drums. However, new to me, at least in this genre, is the use of electronic sequences once in a while. At the end of opener 'Pour The Wisdom Into The Chalice of Life' this creates something highly surprising and very refreshing. In 'Ritual of The Crystal Flame' some vocal samples are used, increasing the level of variation on this album.
The most surprising element however, is ther fact that guitars, blast beats and black metal voices aren't always needed. In stead, HaatE focuses on a cinematic approach, much like a band like Ulver does. The result is quite magnificent, immense pieces of ambient doom, alternated with some of the least extreme black metal I've ever heard. In fact, on the last track, 'The Forlon Majesty', the metal elements are completely gone, leaving us with a splendid dark ambient track, driving on an awesome electronic sequence.
On his facebook page I read that this album received some bad reviews. Somehow, I can understand those. From a black metal purist point of view, this is as far away from the original genre as possible. However, purists are narrow-minded cunts who despise everything that is not in their league. As an open-minded metal and ambient admirer, I can honestly say that this is an excellent album with three great songs, brought to you by a very talented artist.
'This is great, this is great'.