The album blasts off with “Put It To The Torch,” a rollicking and anthemic track filled with energy and aggression. Jamey Jasta and company blaze through the 12 tracks on The Divinity Of Purpose in under 40 minutes, with nary an ounce of filler. The songs are focused and potent, and even though they follow the usual Hatebreed template, the energy and passion make them sound fresh.
Hatebreed’s live set is already packed with memorable songs, and there are a few from this album destined to join them, especially “Own Your World” and the title track. Another highlight is “Dead Man Breathing,” with guitar riffs giving a nod to Slayer’s “South Of Heaven.”
Jasta is a charismatic frontman and draws the lion’s share of attention, but guitarists Frank Novinek and Wayne Lozinak are the engine that drives the Mack truck known as Hatebreed. Their powerful riffs and brief but memorable solos are at a high level on this album. The sound is anchored by the rhythm section of Chris Beattie (bass) and Matt Byrne (drums).
Jasta has done more melodic singing recently with Kingdom Of Sorrow and his solo album, but with Hatebreed he utilizes his hardcore bark most of the time. He does break out melodic singing in small doses on songs including “Indivisible," “Bitter Truth” and “Nothing Scars Me." "Boundless (Time To Murder It)" probably has the most singing, and it's still only a small portion of the song.
Chris “Zeuss” Harris returns as producer on The Divinity Of Purpose, with help from the band and Josh Wilbur (Lamb Of God, Avenged Sevenfold). The sound is crisp and defined, accentuating the band’s punchy metallic delivery. It’s a trick capturing the band’s live energy on CD, but they have done a good job here.
The more than three year gap since their last album has made The Divinity Of Purpose highly anticipated for Hatebreed fans, and it meets all expectations.
(released January 29, 2013 on Razor & Tie)