AMN Reviews: HATHENTER- wr w​-​r wwr0wr​-​g 0w -er0gw- -0wr w (2020; Bandcamp)

With a title that resembles something that you would see in a UNIX filesystem, HATHENTER has a similarly unconventional approach to its music. The group consists of guitarist Mick Barr and Warr guitarist Colin Marston, guitarist Brandon Seabrook, and bass guitarist Eliane Gazzard. All of these individuals are known for their contributions to extreme and technical metal bands, creative jazz, drone, and various other types of music.

The album is characterized by relentless speed-picking, often with multiple members of the group doing so in unison. The resulting sounds merge and blend into stuttered and buzzing drones. The picking falls into both distinct patterns that create giant distorted walls of dense sound, as well as more exploratory forms that twist around a central theme. This extreme approach is philosophically similar to post-rock but accompanied by an intensity and uneasiness.  Nonetheless, some sections sound more synth-generated (this may or may not be the case given the range of the Warr guitar and any studio manipulation that may have taken place), and closer to dark ambient soundscapes.

With HATHENTER, Barr, Marston, Seabrook, and Gazzard have produced a unique-sounding offering. Of the album’s four tracks, three are quite long, giving the group an opportunity to fully explore frameworks and textures.  Great stuff!

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