Whenever we add an anticipated album to our fabled (Get it???) upcoming year preview list, most times without hearing a single note of new music, there’s always this slight bit of trepidation that maybe the band we’ve put our faith in won’t deliver (While some just don’t actually deliver a record in said upcoming year as intended but that’s a whole other post). Texan Melodic Death Metallers Hinayana was one of those bands blindly put on our 2023 preview post without any new music out but based on the strength of 2020’s Death of the Cosmic (Still on repeat here), we had a feeling.
And that feeling was well deserved because what fans will get when Shatter and Fall is unleashed in November is nothing short of astounding. From the opening pangs of “Slowly Light Collides”, with its crushing slow burn that has airs of Crowbar’s “Planets Collide” in terms of lumbering intensity, it’s pretty apparent that Hinayana’s sophomore effort will be a defining moment for the Texas quintet. “Mind is a Shadow” features Vincent Jackson Jones (Æther Realm) who accompanies vocalist Casey Hurd with some upper range screams to make the track that much more epic while “How Many Dreams” is driven by Daniel Vieira and Michael Anstice’s respective drum and keyboard precision to start before adding some more Groove Metal elements on a song that both slays and sways.
“Spirit and Matter” thrives thanks to this percussive barrage from Vieira with Hurd sounding absolutely monstrous while surrounded by Erik Shtaygrud’s guitar (As wells as Hurd’s own) and Matt Bius’ bass with Anstice’s keys glistening throughout to give an added depth to the brutality. First single “Reverse the Code” was probably the most representative at the time of what Shatter and Fall would eventually bring with a heavy dose of aggro and atmosphere which is a line that Hinayana treads so well with “Lost to Flame” being a more “traditional” Metal track from the new Texas titans if you will and even this goes to place beyond the regular Heavy realm.
“The Answer” is haunting heaviness with the way Hurd’s growl manages to emote within the ethereal world Anstice has created as those drums from Vieira pummel and Hurd and Shtaygrud’s guitars absolutely soar to make the track quite the conundrum/cluster with the duality in sounds it conveys. Recently released “Triptych Visions” is a chugging monolith that continues to walk a fine line between shredding and serenity while Wolfheart/Dawn Of Solace’s Tuomas Saukkonen joins Hinayana for the cathartic crunch of “A Tide Unturning” before “Taken” provides one last blast of uplifting unholiness as a the most perfect parting gift for fans new and old.
Shatter and Fall drops on November 10th through Napalm Records. You can get your pre-order on now for streaming, digital, and physical copies by heading here. For more on Hinayana, follow them across the information superhighway when you click here or here.