Country: Bulgaria
Title: Umbra
Label: Art Gates Records
Year: 2019
Style: Death Metal

I thought I knew many bands from the neighboring country, but I don't think I was aware of Hyperborea until now, and shame on me because the Sofia based quintet has been around since '97 and this is their third full-length album to date, so not a meteoric presence in any way. Maybe their silence between their second album (Cryogenic Somnia from 2007) and the most recent one, Umbra, might be a valid reason for my unawareness, but getting over it Hyperborea are back at work and have delivered here a 9 tracks effort clocking a bit over 40 minutes of playing time. Their style can be described as a militaristic, commanding, highly precise and oppressive form of Death Metal blanding both US and American influences, with semi-technical structures with a hint of Prog at times, varied and quite fresh sounding, a semi-growling comprehensive vocal segment that's mixed upfront exactly to enhance that commanding feeling you'll get right from the start of this album. An old-school mid-tempo Death Metal diving at times into fast paced old-school Brutal Death Metal, and at others clearly influenced by Prog Death and even Thrash Death, so a versatile style delivered with outstanding precision and care for details, not the catchiest band around, but one that does its job remarkably and its well worth supporting! Listen carefully and you'll discover a lot of little hooks and passages to make your time well spent on this album.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8/10