Hollow Haze – Through Wild Landscapes And Deep Blue Seas Review

GenreMelodic Metal
Release Date12 July 2019
Record LabelFrontiers

Hollow Haze are back with a couple new members in their seventh album, Through Wild Landscapes and Deep Blue Seas. The latest in their constantly changing lineup, which at one point included Fabio Lione, are vocalist Fabio D (Arthemis) and drummer Paolo Caridi (Sweet Oblivion, ex-Arthemis). However, having fresh members doesn’t necessarily equate to a fresh album.

On the surface, Wild Landscapes is easily digestible. There aren’t a whole lot of intricacies and its songs are very straightforward. Unfortunately, its for these reasons (and others) that the album scores so low. This is an incredibly watered down version of metal and I find myself wanting way more from, well, everything, but the drums especially. If there was just a bit of oomph to add some more life to the music, it would do this album wonders.

It’s evident that Hollow Haze try to remedy this simplicity with the use of orchestrations, but even these are pretty uninspired. Most of the arrangements just come across as late-Nightwish ripoffs played by a band that has a quarter of the passion. Melodic metal is a formulaic genre on the best of days, but the lack of emotion is ultimately what kills an album.

Among this pale ocean of regularity, there are some things I like about this record. The opener, ‘Destinations’, is a decent track, and there’s a steady energy that’s maintained throughout it. Additionally, the melodies are catchy and well-executed. As far as the band itself goes, they play pretty well, despite their rigid uniformity. Honestly, this new lineup really seems to work, and I bet they could make something great if they focused a bit less on being commercially viable and a bit more on having a bit of fun with the whole thing.

All things considered, I was underwhelmed with this album. It begins fairly strong with ‘Destinations’, but it fails to offer anything past a very typical melodic metal experience. This is something you could probably throw on in the background at a social gathering and nobody would give you shit, but it’s not really anything I’d listen to by myself.

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Stay Metal \m/

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