Metal Monday Album Review: Full of Hell - Weeping Choir

Full Of Hell’s highly-anticipated fourth full-length Weeping Choir launched back in May to critical success. Just between me and you, we’re well aware how tardy this review is being published. Now I, illuminated by my unnecessarily bright laptop screen in an otherwise deprived-of-light basement at two o’clock in the morning, could sit here and reason with you as to why such a big release wasn’t covered back on May 17th when it originally debuted. Perhaps the complexity and pummeling nature of Full Of Hell’s music needed a whole month and a half to properly decipher, or maybe one can find meaning in the inverse relationship between this album’s full-throttle attitude and my lazy summer work ethic. Regardless, none of us are in the wrong, as people are still talking about this record and so should you. Here goes!

Full Of Hell have become a household name within the death/grind arena of metal music, which is a somewhat impressive feat considering they just celebrated their ten year anniversary. While they are still playing dingy bars and backyard barbecues, the quartet are otherwise omnipresent within the scene thanks to incessant touring, constant artist collaborations, and fan gushing. You may recognize them from their recent tours with Gatecreeper, Genocide Pact, and Primitive Man, or their various splits/EPs with artists like The Body and Nails. What else can be said?

Weeping Choir hails in similar fashion to the group’s prior album, 2017’s Trumpeting Ecstasy. This new output is another full-length carrying a long tracklist but who’s runtime doesn’t meet the industry standard of thirty-minute full-length quotas. So what. Nothing about this is standard. Or is it?

After a few listens, there’s something comforting about the mathematical and otherwise algorithmic nature of Weeping Choir. While listening to ‘50s swing music will surely tell you a thing or two about typical song structures, you’d think that Full Of Hell’s 2019 sonic amalgamation abomination would take you to the opposite end of the spectrum, towards that of noise and nonsense. However, in surprising fashion, I found myself seeing clearly through the staticky haze of Weeping Choir, much like those television geniuses who see white chalk equations floating around their heads.

I found appreciation within Full Of Hell’s ability to inject a sense of balance into an otherwise hectic release. While I’m sure there will be fifty bearded, baseball cap, ill-fitting Gildan box-fit t-shirt-wearing teenagers at my door willing to parry my argument with their acquired ability to sit through successive hours of noisecore albums, I don’t think the full-length music format really fits the whole “don’t stop ‘til you drop” grindcore thing. Of course, that’s why all these bands like Full of Hell hand out splits and EPs akin to makeup companies handing out freebies when a new line of skin moisturizer comes out.

Weeping Choir just has a nice ebb and flow going on. With the juxtaposition between visceral screaming and harmonized segue tracks, and precision blast beats rattling at a million miles an hour, there’s something larger behind this album. Be it thanks to a large floating hand dangling these tracks via connected string, or perhaps just Full Of Hell’s songwriting ability, the album is very controlled and almost pre-destined. I’m no man of faith, but there might be higher powers responsible for this album’s orchestra of destruction. From the machinegun “rat-a-tats” on “Aria of Jeweled Tears”, to the call and response screaming of “Haunted Arches”, this album is just very tight and well executed, which can be heard in the aforementioned details, as well as within the record’s full scope. Ultimately, Full Of Hell encapsulates this hidden death/grind art of balancing chaos and order, all while pumping out memorable songs.

Hunter Walwaski is the co-host of The Iron Club, which airs on CJLO every Sunday at 9:00 PM.