Unlike “A Profound Hatred of Man”, “Hearts Once Nourished” only has its original nine tracks. Why the other disc had a number of covers and this one does is beyond me, but the band is able to make a good thing even with this smaller amount of tracks. The disc is much longer per track than is “A Profound Hatred of Man”, so that may be the case. This was the first disc that was released by Shai Hulud (at least, the first LP). The band starts out absolutely stunningly with “Solely Concentrating On The Negative Aspects of Life”. This track again uses a number of layers to bring individuals in fully to Shai Hulud’s world, with hints of Fear Factory, Sunny Day Real Estate, and would precede all of the current hardcore bands in regard to the up-front and loud vocalist.
One very cosmetic thing is that the current set of re-released Shai Hulud albums have much better cover art than ewas on the original discs; with “Hearts Once Nourished”, the buyer gets the chest cavity of a skeletal creature (“A Profound Hatred of Man” has the top third). One is then led to believe that Revelation is going to re-release another album to be the bottle of the creature (I’m guessing “That Within Blood Ill-Tempered”, but I have no clue. Anyways, back to this review; Shai Hulud provide some of the most confident and full-bodied hardcore that the world has ever heard. Where most hardcore bands both when this album was released and in the current period were content bulking up the vocals while letting the instruments waste away in the background, Shai Hulud has put everything to the red-line and went forward without leaving anything behind.
Tracks may only be two or three minutes long, but Shai Hulud put so much into each and every track that the songs each feel as if they are five or six minutes long. This re-releasing of Shai Hulud discs is the perfect thing to allow listeners to find out why the band was such a big thing in the late nineties, and provide a barometer to how the band sounded then and how the new iteration of the band sounds now. Pick up both of these re-releases and bring yourself back to the halcyon days of 1997, when Shai Hulud first rocked the hardcore world singlehandedly.
Top Tracks: Solely Concentrating on the Negative Aspects of Life, Beliefs and Obsessions
Shai Hulud – Hearts Once Nourished / 2006 Revelation / 9 Tracks / http://www.hulud.com / http://www.revelationrecords.com / Reviewed 19 August 2006