Haiduk – Spellbook (2012)

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Arriving from Canada in full force, today we have Haiduk and their debut full-length release titled “Spellbook”. As a one-man project, Haiduk is one of those bands that deliver simple yet powerful music that will send you into a headbanging rampage since the first listen. Featuring ten tracks filled with guitar acrobatics blended with Death and Thrash Metal influences, this album packs a lot of punch in its short duration.

Opening with the catchy “Lich”, Haiduk immediately showcases a furious speed that only a handful of bands can pull off and not sound extremely pretentious. The overall atmosphere of the track is intense and very melodic but aggressive at the same time. The growls are pretty standard, but sometimes sound a bit uninspired when contrasting the powerful music. In another Death/Thrash 101 lecture, “Stormcall” is a very straight forward track that has an entertaining bass guitar line and efficient drumming.

As the album starts to warm-up, tracks like “Black Wind” and “Maelstorm” fly by with destructive energy thanks to their crafty structures. By the time we hit “Forcefield” we started to notice that the drumming has become very predictable and linear, and it becomes more of a background noise. The guitar work keeps being superb, but it also feels like the acrobatics are too calculated and not as free flowing as one would expect. Our favorite track is the Dissection-esque “Hex” and its pummeling vibe.

If you want a near-shredding experience, “Tremor” will provide you with heaps of cool guitar elements tossed in a semi-entertaining track. Another solid track is the very cohesive “Fire Wield”. In this track you get both powerful riffs and guitar acrobatics nicely blended together rather than disconnected as in some of the previous songs. Reminding us a bit of Death Angel blended with Death, “Vortex” nicely closes this interesting release.

Overall, “Spellbook” is quite an interesting release. On one side you have the excellent guitar technical skills of the man behind Haiduk, and on the other side you have decently constructed songs that tend to get repetitive and tiresome after a while. While the skill of the band is undeniable, we feel that there is the need for more band members to bring other ideas and make the songs more creative and engaging. If you are looking for a solid release with killer guitars and don’t really mind the rest, then check this one out.

Band: Haiduk Album: Spellbook
Label: Self-Release

Release: July 18th, 2012

Oficial Site myspace

Genre: Death/Thrash Metal

Country: Canada

Rating: 82/100