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15 May 2011

Review - The Cruelty of Great Expectations

Source: Power Of Metal


My first foray into Northern Ireland's Honey For Christ (spurred by a meeting online with a bandmember) has led me to "The Cruelty of Great Expectations", which appears to be the first full length following a litany of demos and EPs.

Musically, it's pretty depressive and dark, touching elements of Doom at times, with some slow, acoustic breakdowns, but also with some up tempo parts. Instrumentally they are a little grungier sounding than Katatonia, but they don't really have the same feel. At times, I would feel more comfortable comparing the feelings and mood invoked to Anathema (which means get out your razor blades).

In terms of quality, it can be a little inconsistent from section to section, but there's something to catch your ear in every song on the album. Portions of the album are too vocally driven for my liking; I mean the vocals are good, but the inventiveness of the musical portion of the band is lacking in such areas. This is a bit frustrating at times because there is a ton of promise in the instrumental sections of the songs. Every so often I get this feeling like they'd really benefit from an additional element musically as well.

The album does pick up a lot of steam over the last four tracks though, which are all good, building to "Failures Within" which is quite groovy, followed by "The Final Transition", which has the most interesting guitar-work on the album.

In the end, it shapes up to be a very listenable album. I think they might actually benefit as well from playing in a sub-genre that isn't over-saturated. While this album isn't going toe to toe with depressive titans such as the aforementioned Katatonia and Anathema, it holds its own and can certainly appeal to someone looking for a similar type of feel.

7/10

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