Exclusive Track Premiere: Hour of Penance’s “Cast the First Stone”

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The Italian masters return with the title track from their blistering new album Cast the First Stone. Ready to be set ablaze with righteous vengeance? Then get in here and stab play.

Cast the First Stone is Hour of Penance’s seventh full-length in fourteen years. That sort of dedication sees the death metal maestros playing to their strengths and churning out another fiery batch of technical death metal infused with scathing brutality and disarming melody. Hour of Penance fans and tech death heads are going to find plenty to love in this inflammatory new screed.

“Cast the First Stone” may be the strongest yet of the three tracks HoP have released in the lead-up to the new album, due out next week on the 27th. Not that “The Chains of Misdeed,” which sports some off-kilter Immolation-esque dissonance battling against harmonic melody for dominance, or “XXI Century Imperial Crusade,” with its grim, nausea-inducing leads and bombastic orchestration, are slouches either, but “Cast the First Stone” just presents the perfect balance of all the tricks in this most erudite of band’s wheelhouse. The melody, technicality, and brutality are all subject to the confines of the song itself, demonstrating this band’s mastery of songcraft.

The title track opens with a wee bit of mood-setting ambient orchestration before unleashing a blazing volley of chromatic leads and rumbling percussion just slightly askew of the guitar progression. The effect is one of sublime disorientation that leaves your head spinning and mind-scrambling before the band begins its more traditional death metal riff attack. Perhaps the most surprising segment of the song, though, kicks off at around 2:30, just before the harmonies kick back in; the song takes a sudden twist and slams you off the battlements with an absolutely massive start-and-stop riff sure to get all the militants headbanging in radical revelry. It’s impossible not to want to grab a sword and go on a crusade after hearing that riff.

Rest assured that the rest of Cast the First Stone lives up the promise of this title track. HoP have built a proud tradition of consistency and dependability, and the title track, with its mad alterations between earth-shattering headbangability and face-melting technicality, offers everything you love from the death metal veterans.

Cast the First Stone was recorded at Kick Recording Studios and mastered by bassist Marco Mastrobuono. It features artwork from Gyula Havancsak depicting a deadly clash against the Crusaders. The album drops Friday, January 27th, 2017. You can pre-order via the appropriate Prosthetic webshop here and here or from Bandcamp, iTunes, Amazon, or Google Play. While you’re at it, go say hi to Hour of Penance on Facebook and tell them the Toilet said, “Ciao!”

  • KyleJMcBride

    I love all y’all and you guys treat me probably better than I deserve, but I feel the need to get this message out there loud and clear.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hxd8ml-n5NE

    • Kevin Nash’s Jackknife

      Amen. I’m usually not one to talk about politricks but I’m not a Trump supporter. I’m also not a Killary supporter.

  • I used to love this band, but eventually you realize that every song is interchangeable with the others. Though this is probably one of the best songs they’ve written and seems to kinda buck that trend a bit.

    • Howard Dean

      I like brutal death metal, but this really isn’t the type that I dig. I’m more of a Brodequin/Disgorge style BDM fan or a straight up slam fiend. I could listen to big, loud, retarded slam every goddamn day.

      • Space Monster W.

        Brodequin is doooope!

        • Howard Dean

          Instruments of Torture is such a monster of an album. That was a real boundary-pusher in brutality. Such a beastly band.

      • Dunno that I would call this brutal death. Its more that style of tech death that every italian tech death band seems to want to play.

        • Howard Dean

          I pretty much agree, since I always equate BDM with bands that use slams (or that are so otherworldly heavy that you can’t call them anything else, like Enmity). I just know that a lot of this tech death that has a similar vibe as Suffocation/Origin/Nile gets tossed into the BDM territory. There’s a fair amount of overlap.

          • Space Monster W.

            It’s one of those grey areas of genre discretization that kinda requires example bands to be tossed out. I’ve heard Nile referred to as brutal death metal just as often as tech death, so what can you do.

          • Black Smallbeard

            Nile is def more tech than they are brutal. just this rednecks opinion

          • FrankWhiteKingOfNY

            Nile is def more Nile than they are tech or brutal.

          • Black Smallbeard

            i was gonna say too that theyre still my fav inside that genre

          • FrankWhiteKingOfNY

            Yep, Nile is still my favorite Nile band.

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KVa75CkPgcU

          • DoYouThinkHeSaurus
          • Space Monster W.

            I don’t disagree, but tech death itself has become kind of a catch-all that isn’t terribly helpful. Nile, Origin, and Gorguts don’t sound at all alike, but here we are.

          • Black Smallbeard

            true enough. to the normie it all just sounds like “noise” anyway, so we probably suck

          • Space Monster W.

            Oh, we deff sukk.

      • Dental_Damnation

        That Brodequin live sample pad drumming is possibly the coolest thing I have ever seen.

        • CyberneticOrganism

          Just googled it. That’s the nerdiest thing I’ve ever seen.

          • Dental_Damnation

            The cool guys aren’t listening to Brodequin I would imagine. They all look like high school history teachers

    • I don’t really hear that – I’m an avoider of most brutal/tech death, but this band has something really unique. Like Hate Eternal, super fast + brutal, yet still writing very melodic and memorable music.

  • Black Smallbeard

    Ill play this in the gym here in a minute

  • Waynecro

    YES!!! This album is going to stomp nuts hard enough to make me sterile.

    • CyberneticOrganism

      RIP Waynecro’s nuts

      • Waynecro

        It’s not a major loss. Their only real use was in gauging the degree of heaviness of new metal albums.

        • Count_Breznak

          You dangle ’em in front of the speakers and meassure the angle of deviation from being perpendicular to the ground ?

          • Waynecro

            That’s an interesting idea, but I’m no good at geometry. I just determine how heavy an album is by measuring how severely it crushes my nuts–simple and effective.

          • Count_Breznak

            Well, but your results are highly subjective and make reproduction impossible.

          • Waynecro

            Making reproduction impossible is the method’s greatest selling point for me. It’s not like I’m having the sex necessary to reproduce, but you can never be too careful.

          • Count_Breznak

            Without reproducibility the result won’t stand a scientific review.

          • Waynecro

            Sometimes, bro, you just have to step away from science and follow your heart–or, in this case, crushed genitals.

  • Mmm, love this stuff. I’ll take “interchangeable” (<3 Solid Snek) Hour of Penance songs all day long!

    • Waynecro

      This song is nothing like Hour of Penance songs, but I’ve been jamming it a lot lately.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1S9HOV0L-L8

      • this is gud, Wayne. i looked up the full album and am jamming it now!

        • Waynecro

          Awesome! I think it’s a pretty rawkin’ album.

    • Actually digging this song a lot, getting Paradogma vibes.

  • Señor Jefe El Rosa

    Hey now! This is pretty cool!