Darkest Hour – Deliver Us

Washington DC's much loved metallers Darkest Hour have released their latest and fifth record 'Deliver Us' Distancing themselves from their previous metalcore stigma this release proves that they are more than a label. This record contains all the emotion, intensity and fire whilst adding a whole new dimension of sounds to the genre.

After forming in 1998 the band appeared to set the agenda for things to come. Creating a sound that is as melodic as it is brutal and touring with great bands such as Converge, Shadows Fall and Anti-Flag. It's been one long journey of continuous improvement for Darkest Hour and they have once again produced an album that will live up to their name.

With the help of Strapping Young Lad's Devin Townsend's production skills 'Deliver Us' is said to be one of Darkest Hour's most diverse records to date. It's definitely got elements of hardcore although interspersed with melody, clean vocals, harsh growls and some metal soloing.

One of the unfortunate aspect however of creating music like this is that there are so many bands out there doing something similar, bands end up trying too hard, whether it be image, lyrical content or attitude. The clichés get churned out again and again and it all ends up sounding well to be honest a bit ..blah. With this record though a few listens are required to get past this, as there are more layers and diversities beneath the surface. The emotional tone of the record guided by the chord progressions are pretty much standard for a band like this but it's not all they have to offer. Vocalist John Henry offers the occasional break from his throaty growls to a contrasting cleaner direction adding an element of intimacy, which draws you in further.
An equally important aspect of this record is the contribution of guitarist Kris Norris who adds some much needed harmonies and soloing which helps to create the metal dimension. This makes for a fuller and more substantial sound and distances the band from being solely hardcore. 'Deliver Us' has also been said to be a very personal record and the bands personal issues are expressed in the lyrics more so than previous releases.

Darkest Hour already have a name for themselves and they already have masses of dedicated and loyal fans. For those of you who have overlooked this band due to presuming they were just another Victory records cliché I would look again if I were you. They have surprised me and they might even surprise you too.