Harakiri For the Sky comes back this year with a follow-up to their successful 2018 release, Arson. Harakiri is a two-man operation and both dudes only go by initials. So, I’m not really at liberty to speak much on the background of these guys since I haven’t been granted security clearance as of yet. All I can say is that JJ provides the lyrics/vocals and MS brings all of the musical arrangements and instrumentation. Oh, and they’re a couple of long-haired heshers from Austria.
The latest opus is simply that. It is a double album that is jam-packed full of blackened death metal that embraces all that is melancholy and depressing in the world. This is not an album to help you feel anything close to optimism. A sampling of song titles: “I, Pallbearer”, “Sing For the Damage We’ve Done”, “Three Empty Words”, “Us Against a December Sky”. Yeah, this shit feeds my worldview. Musically, this one feels a little more straight ahead than Arson did. The meat of the songs is fairly driving and crusty death metal. Hell, there’s even a bit of hardcore undercurrent to the thing in places. To me, the album really shines during the quieter and more atmospheric interludes and breaks within the songs. To me, it feels as though the album would have benefitted from a bit more experimentation and flushing out of some of these more melodic breaks. But, that’s just me.
All in all, not a bad follow-up to a stellar prior album. I will say that it has grown on me more and more with each listen. A solid release.
3.5 flip flops out of 5