Out of control and savagely relentless, Hate Eternal continue to show why Florida is the undisputed home of death metal on their fifth album, Phoenix Amongst the Ashes. From the outset, the intro track, “Rebirth,” almost feels like a bait and switch, a false smile to reassure listeners that everything is going to be all right before the band pulls the rug out from underneath them with the suffocating heaviness of “The Eternal Ruler.” From then on, the album rampages to the end, taking no prisoners along the way and leaving no bit of sonic real estate unfilled. It’s this busy feeling that dominates the album, with the band cramming so much into every moment that the songs feel not only menacing, but inescapable. For the most part, the only respite that’s to be found on the album comes from the momentary gaps between tracks, giving listeners a second of stark silence to gather themselves up before the next assault comes. While it might seem like this kind of pacing would be exhausting, Hate Eternal have a deep enough bag of heavy metal tricks that the album never feels formulaic, placing just enough breakdowns and solos throughout the album to break things up, but not frequently enough that the songs become predictable. For those looking to bring a little intensity back into their lives, seek no further.
AllMusic Review by Gregory Heaney