Pagan Records, 1996
Genre: Black/Death Metal
3. Those are Dead but Shall Rise
4. Merciless Onslaught
5. Antichrist (Destruction Cover)
This recording is nearly lost to time itself. Even I nearly missed it when I started collecting the Hell-Born material I already have. This is a serious piece of history as well since this marks one of the earliest releases from Pagan Records a label still representing some of Poland's finest bands today! At this time the musicians behind Hell-Born are much more well known for their efforts with the band Damnation, but Hell-Born has distinctly different qualities compared to Damnation and I can see why the projects were separated.
Hell-Born are certainly a Black/Death Metal project, which is different from the more straight forward Death Metal Damnation was presenting us. So the duo of Les and Ravenclaw put together this very impressive EP to introduce us to some of the other musical ideas the band had kicking around. I'm not sure what the two had really planned for this project, because I'm sure other musical commitments would consume the two high-profile and in demand musicians for many years before Hell-Born would ever release a full length. It's sort of sad because this brand of Black/Death is actually quite strong and sounds quite different for it's time. Ah well, in the same year we got "Rebel souls" from Damnation. Anyway, Hell-Born play a rather atmosphere infused Black/Death, which gives a very incredible feel to their music. It's both haunting and catchy at the same time and they manage to balance these elements nearly as well as Necrophobic might. Hell-Born use a much thicker and Deathier guitar tone compared to other bands, since they really are just using the same tone Damnation uses, but with a slightly different application. Sometimes this type of writing shows through in Damnation's work, but here we have nothing but that haunting style Damnation can sometimes evoke in their writing. The Hell-Born EP closes out with a cover of Destructions "Antichrist" and I'm not sure if they've changed much, but with this tone and presentation it certainly has Blackened up the song quite a bit.
In the end this is some great early work from the band and I really wish they had put out more material in the late 90's. I highly recommend checking out this EP if you like Black/Death Metal, especially if you like things with a sort of old school approach to the writing style.