Band: The Opposite of Hate
CD Title: Beginnings
Label: Progressive Gears Records (2017)
Rating: Great Stuff 4/5
There is an interesting irony here, that the music on this release is oftentimes harsh and aggressive, two things which seem to defy the band name The Opposite of Hate. You would think the sound of a band with a name like that would be something gentle, soft or even placid, but thatís not the case here. No sir! In fact Iíve seen this Brazilian outfit listed under the Progressive Metal category and while that certainly does fit in a general sense, I would suggest there is quite a bit more to the bandís musical stylings than just the heavy stuff. This is the bandís first studio recording and it was originally released in 2015 to great reviews and sees rerelease here in 2017 to hopefully a wider audience, with a bonus track. Musically this sixty-minute album features nine tracks with an obvious leaning towards the heavier side of the Progressive Rock genre and yet itís the kind of music that isnít afraid to veer off into softer, less crunchy areas. These are mostly longer songs in the seven or eight minute range so there are lots of musical shifts. Taken together the bandís musical approach is quite complex, fusing a variety of genre styles together, changing in very dramatic fashion with tunes veering from heavy crunching guitar to softer melodic sections before picking up tempo and heading off in yet another musical direction. I liked the fact that for a guitar heavy sound there is a lot of keyboard work to be heard and keyboard lead lines at that. I wouldnít say that keyboards get equal time with the guitar, but they do get a lot. My initial impressions were that, yes, this is a heavy album but at the same time there was a lot of dynamic contrast with some very intentional leaning to some very dramatic musical change-ups. In fact I liked just about everything about the sound here, except for when the vocals head off on the shouting screaming direction. You lost me there as it seemed to serve no purpose in conveying the songís musical emotion. Still, as far as heavy prog is concerned, The Opposite of Hate has a great sound and if this is your musical style of choice you would be safe in checking out Beginnings.