Review: “As Summer Dies” EP by Hartsbane

Mixed by Ofer Dvir at Dmusic Studios, “As Summer Dies” is the forthcoming debut EP from Hartsbane. A modern Metal band from Israel comprised of drummer Aviram Zeevy, bassist Alon Shulman, guitarist Amit Fortus and of course vocalist Levi Kerzhner, they have a touch of Iron Maiden, The Raven Age and even Trivium about them. That’s very evident with the clean sung, classic Metal sound of opening song “Tame” which has its roots firmly in that 80’s Maiden guitar sound while benefiting from the modern production value Ofer Dvir is able to provide. When it closes out, there is some applause and cheers as the band are playing live, which then bleeds neatly into the opening of “Nobody Knows” and connects the songs nicely. A more hooky guitar driven track, it takes something of a hard rock edge into the sound and has a big clean vocal sound from Kerzhner, who could easily turn his voice to any cover the band should choose without being over shadowed by the original vocalist.

All of the tracks on “As Summer Dies” have been edited and added to in post-production, but the core and the energy of the recordings are live. The first four were recorded at Hartsbane’s debut live show on 17th March 2018 at an event called Unwasted Years (a spin on the song title “Wasted Years”, something any Iron Maiden fan will be all to aware of and probably cringe at!), a tribute to Iron Maiden and headlined by Prowelers, Israel’s premier Iron Maiden tribute. It’s an interesting decision to leave in the crowd noise on those first four tunes at the start and end of each song. If that had been cut, you might be none the wiser or thought it had been recorded live in the studio.

Looking for a replacement for love to get over a broken relationship, “Substitute” plays out with a radio Metal quality lyrically while having a melodic Trivium styled solo that shows the talent of Fortus in a greater light. It adds a touch of quality that gives the whole song a sparkle and shine. Lyrically the song focuses on a sort of coming of age story in Kerzhner’s life. EP title track “As Summer Dies” has a distinct twin guitar layer with some nice lead parts from Fortus adding to the chugged rhythm riff while the chorus has nice sing-a-long value. “Tomorrows Rain” closes the EP with an acoustic affair was recorded live on 9th February 2019 at Acum house, in a double feature with Hellscore, a Metal Accapella choir and unlike the rest of the EP is far more obviously live. One of the finer cuts on the EP, Kerzhner encourages the crowd to sing along in his native tongue and they sing the whoa’s back [7/10]

Track listing

  1. “Tame”
  2. “Nobody Knows”
  3. “Subsitute”
  4. “As Summer Dies”
  5. “Tomorrows Rain” (Acoustic)

“As Summer Dies” by Hartsbane is due to be released April 20th 2019

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