I can't believe I haven't reviewed these guys yet. Hatestroke hail from Kediri in East Java. They formed in 2005, signed to the legendary Rottrevore Records, and then released their full-length debut The Schematic Diagram Of Hate Distribution in 2009. This album might have a strange name, but the music is awesome.
The production is on the raw end of the spectrum. It's a bit cloudy and the snare has this clanging sound, but the music makes up for it. These guys take the brutal death metal that Indonesia is famous for and they combine it with a bit of grindcore. Drummer Ade Godex (nickname God-X) hits us with a constant violent blast beat onslaught that is sometimes broken up by mid-paced rhythms that feature hyper speed double bass. This album doesn't list a bassist, but I can still hear bass on this album, especially on songs like “Hatred” and “Carnivorous”. It makes the album sound even darker and heavier than it already is.
The vocal duties are handled by a man named Casper. He is not friendly and he is not a ghost, but his performance is fantastic. He hits us with a bunch of deep and hoarse growls that sound like they're being made by a fiery lich filled with hate. Best of all is the guitar work of Yery. Indonesia is renowned for its awesome guitar work, and Hatestroke is no exception. Yery's skill set ranges from sinister chugs that are frequently broken up by pinch harmonics to fiery shredding riffs that transform into slithering tremolo riffs. Topping it all off are the technical riffs. These riffs aren't technical simply for the sake of being technical. These riffs give the album a diabolical atmosphere. Their screeches and howls sound like they're erupting from a realm where hatred reigns supreme. My favorite technical riffs are on “Outro”, which strangely enough is in the middle of the album, not at the end.
Despite the flawed production, The Schematic Diagram Of Hate Distribution is one of the best brutal death metal albums to ever come out of Indonesia. The brutality is unrelenting and the songs are masterfully crafted. Now I'm just wondering if they'll release anything new. Seriously, they recorded this album six years ago and they haven't made anything since.