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5 Great Melodic Death Metal Albums You Might Have Missed, by Brian Parks + Cullen Poythress (Hatchets for Hands)

While last year's Convulsions of a Dying Empire EP might have garnered them strong praise from various metal outlets, Brian Parks (bassist/guitarist) and Cullen Poythress (vocalist/drummer) of Hatchets for Hands weren't in any mood for a break. The San Francisco-based melodic deathsters got back into the lab and cranked out new music, which will be released as singles, eventually leading up to their proper full-length debut. Take a listen to "Age of Deceit" below and get a taste of what Hatchets for Hands are all about:

Since they obviously know the subject matter so well, No Echo asked Brian and Cullen to give us their picks for 5 Great Melodic Death Metal Albums You Might Have Missed. Their list is below, complete with their thoughts on each selection.

Wolfheart, Tyhjyys (2017)

Leave it to the Fins to produce some of the most crushingly dark and powerfully melodic death on the planet. This record and their recent subsequent releases are high on our playlist of bands showcasing both instrumental, melodic beauty and raw, blastful brutality. It’s this unique dichotomy that really sets these guys apart and allows this record to move gracefully from start to finish. You can almost feel the freezing winds of the nordic winter in their guitars making them among our favorite relative newcomers to the genere.  

Meadows End, Sojourn (2015) 

We love listening to records that set a tone, mood and atmosphere—and Sweden’s Meadows End grabs exactly everything we like about the golden age of Scandinavian melodeath with a touch of orchestral atmosphere that’s refreshingly welcomed. While weaving in strings and synths can be an atmospheric cheat code for some bands, the pay off these guys deliver with it in their musicianship, songwriting and overall heaviness is deployed brilliantly and clearly sets them in a league of their own in both sound and approach. 

Kalmah, Palo (2018)

These guys have a  solid history going back to the '90s and have always stayed true to their signature brand of brutal melo-death while simultaneously shaping, pushing and influencing the genre through the decades. That alone makes Palo a very special record and one that keeps us both jealous of their dark and artful riffage and inspired by their glorious, horn raising heavy metal mastery.

Sacrilege, The Fifth Season (1997)

The second album from the short lived Swedish band Sacrilege. Fronted by Daniel Svennson on drums and vocals who would go on to join In Flames in ‘98 as a guitarist. This record has got it all to satisfy the traditional melo-death enthusiast. Straight to the point with plenty of skank beats and harmonized riffing in ¾ time. Go listen now.

Wintersun, Wintersun (2004)

Debut full-length from Finnish powerhouse Wintersun. Cold, dark, and majestic, this record hits all the right notes. Hints of folk and symphonic metal permeate a spacey soundscape of huge riffs and soaring melodies. 

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