Hurakan – Via Aeturna – Album Review

Artist: Hurakan

Album Title: Via Aeturna

Label: Lacerated Enemy Records

Date of Release: 15 April 2022

The reason I’ve never checked out Hurakan before, is because of the looming ‘metalcore’ and ‘deathcore’ tags that have always been used to describe their music. Born in 2015, the French quartet burst onto the scene in 2017 with their debut full-length, the preposterously titled ‘Multiversal Entities Of Abhorrent Hatred’ and have since released another album, ‘Abomination Of Aurokos’ in 2019. Those who know me, know that I have a healthy suspicion of anything too overtly ‘core’, and so I was fully prepared to let Hurakan’s third album pass me by too. However, one thing I’ve noticed more and more of late, as I’ve got more and more into the techdeath arena, is that there is often a very fine line to be drawn between technical death metal and deathcore. And so, with a press release that referenced ‘a new era’, ‘mature’ and ‘more cohesive’, alongside a new logo to back this up, I heard enough to give this a try. Plus, it’s 2022, the year that I try to review anything and everything.

I try not to read any other reviews prior to penning my thoughts about a record but I happened upon a couple by accident when doing my research. The tone of these reviews ranged from the positive to the very positive, and I can certainly see why. ‘Via Aeturna’ is a vicious and energetic so-and-so, that sees the four-piece deliver a well-honed, aggressive, and heavy record that will clearly delight the hordes of deathcore fans out there. I’ll admit that I’m less sold on the album, but I will concede that this has more to do with my personal tastes than the quality of the music delivered here.

What I do like about ‘Via Aeturna’ is the orchestration that features throughout. It provides another dimension to the music, and gives a greater sense of richness and gravitas to the compositions. Credit therefore has to go to Philippe Parickmiler who is responsible for the arrangements, working alongside guitarist and only surviving original member Maxime Maréchal, bassist Raphaël Darras, drummer Thomas Crémier and vocalist Danny Louzon to pull this album together.

The album gets off to a great start with ‘Imperium’, which features the first of three guests in the form of Kyle Anderson of Brand Of Sacrifice. That is, once the odd, distant opening that has me checking my speakers, departs to allow the full force of the music to assault the ears. The orchestration is bold and symphonic, with a dark undertone to it, whilst the drums mete out a solid, beat, joined by marching riffs at a mid-tempo. When Louzon’s screams enter, the pace is picked up, with blastbeats aplenty, but the song retains its symphonic and surprisingly strong melodic nature. Right on cue though, at the halfway mark, in comes a thunderous modern beatdown, break, call it what you will – it’s the main bit about the ‘core’ genre that I dislike most if I’m honest. Cast aside these chuggy sections, and the remainder of the track is a definite winner, with nice changes of pace and intensity, delivered with skill.

Unfortunately, I am unable to simply ‘cast aside’ all of the breakdowns from there on in, because as is the Hurakan way, there are so many of them. They don’t entirely ruin my enjoyment of the record, but they are a fair barrier for me to overcome it must be said. It’s a shame too, because the extreme death metal aggression and technicality is superb. ‘Void’ sees some warp-speed pace that’s scintillating, as well as another dramatic, foreboding opener. There’s a catchiness to the chorus too that’s easily likeable, whilst the metalcore elements are kept more in check, just a little.

‘Abyssal’, which features guest Filip Danielsson of Humanity’s Last Breath, is another great composition, that has a Fear Factory feel at the outset thanks to the sounds used, before this is blasted away with seriously heavy death metal. I really enjoy the moments of quiet calm within the song, that demonstrate that maturity as referenced by the band themselves in the press release.

If I’m honest, I do lose a little of my interest in the middle-to-latter stages of ‘Via Aeturna’. There is still plenty of music to enjoy, but I get a little tired of the chug-chug deathcore elements that seem to creep into just about every track. Tracks like ‘Asmodeus’ and ‘Vagrant’ spring immediately to mind at this point. Mind you, this is clearly their style and kudos to them for not entirely changing their approach in the pursuit of a reset and refresh.

What is interesting and worthy of some exploration, is the closing seven-minute title track, which sees something entirely different from Hurakan. The opening is slow, deliberate, and melodic, with the ensuing song featuring some beautifully delicate and warm melodies created by the strings within the orchestrated parts. The metallic chaos actually takes a back seat for an appreciable amount of the track, whilst there are no vocals whatsoever. The soundscape that the band create, with the help of guest musician, Raphaël Verguin of Psygnosis, is nothing short of brilliant, with atmosphere very much the key ingredient. ‘Oh if only more of the record was like this’, I think to myself. But then, if that were to be the case, then it clearly wouldn’t be Hurakan, and they’d alienate their entire fanbase totally, just to please me.

So, in short, I do like this new album from Hurakan; there is much about ‘Via Aeturna’ that will please fans of technical death metal and metalcore/deathcore. If this is your taste of music, then I very much recommend this album to you as it’s very good. For me though, whilst it helps to maybe break down a few more of my personal taste issues, it demonstrates to me that I am still not a fully sold fan of music that contains too much of a ‘core’ element to it, in spite of how very good every other aspect of it might be.

The Score of Much Metal: 78%

Check out my other 2022 reviews here:

Incandescence – Le Coeur De L’Homme

Imminent Sonic Destruction – The Sun Will Always Set

Monuments – In Stasis

Soledad – XIII

Viande – L’abime dévore les âmes

Credic – Vermillion Oceans

Postcards From New Zealand – Burn, Witch, Burn

Darkher – The Buried Storm

Treat – The Endgame

Bjørn Riis – Everything To Everyone

Destruction – Diabolical

Et Moriemur – Tamashii No Yama

Angel Nation – Antares

Wolf – Shadowland

Denali – Denali EP

Centinex – The Pestilence EP

Meshuggah – Immutable

Chapter Of Hate – Bloodsoaked Decadence EP

Ancient Settlers – Our Last Eclipse

Tranzat – Ouh La La

Playgrounded – The Death Of Death

Father Befouled – Crowned In Veneficum

Abbath – Dread Reaver

PreHistoric Animals – The Magical Mystery Machine (Chapter 2)

Kvaen – The Great Below

Michael Romeo – War Of The Worlds, Part 2

Dark Funeral – We Are The Apocalypse

Carmeria – Advenae

Agathodaimon – The Seven

Moonlight Haze – Animus

Hellbore – Panopticon

Konvent – Call Down The Sun

Idol Of Fear – Trespasser

The Midgard Project – The Great Divide

Threads Of Fate – The Cold Embrace Of The Light

Arkaik – Labyrinth Of Hungry Ghosts

New Horizon – Gate Of The Gods

Cailleach Calling – Dreams Of Fragmentation

Tundra – A Darkening Sky

Sylvaine – Nova

Hath – All That Was Promised

Sabaton – The War To End All Wars

Kuolemanlaakso – Kuusumu

Oh Hiroshima – Myriad

Godless Truth – Godless Truth

Shape Of Despair – Return To The Void

Eight Bells – Legacy Of Ruin

Embryonic Devourment – Heresy Of The Highest Order

Serious Black – Vengeance Is Mine

Allegaeon – Damnum

HammerFall – Hammer Of Dawn

Immolation – Acts Of God

Veonity – Elements Of Power

Nightrage – Abyss Rising

Arjen Anthony Lucassen’s Star One – Revel In Time

Pure Wrath – Hymn To The Woeful Hearts

Dagoba – By Night

The Last Of Lucy – Moksha

Arð – Take Up My Bones

Embryonic Autopsy – Prophecies Of The Conjoined

The Devils Of Loudun – Escaping Eternity

Cult Of Luna – The Long Road North

WAIT – The End Of Noise

Abysmal Dawn – Nightmare Frontier

Amorphis – Halo

Nordic Giants – Sybiosis

Persefone – Metanoia

Vorga – Striving Toward Oblivion

Mystic Circle – Mystic Circle

Nasson – Scars

Burned In Effigy – Rex Mortem

Silent Skies – Nectar

Celeste – Assassine(s)

Abyssus – Death Revival

SOM – The Shape Of Everything

Ashes Of Ares – Emperors And Fools

Beriedir – AQVA

Lalu – Paint The Sky

Nocturna – Daughters Of The Night

Battle Beast – Circus Of Doom

Lee McKinney – In The Light Of Knowledge

Descent – Order Of Chaos

Aethereus – Leiden

Toundra – Hex

Ilium – Quantum Evolution Event EP

Power Paladin – With The Magic Of Windfyre Steel

Necrophagous – In Chaos Ascend

Infected Rain – Ecdysis

Wilderun – Epigone

You can also check out my other reviews from previous years right here:

2021 reviews

2020 reviews

2019 reviews
2018 reviews
2017 reviews
2016 reviews
2015 reviews

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