Hellfire (studio album) by Black Midi

Hellfire by Black Midi
Year: 2022
Release date: New2022-07-15 (released 35 days ago)
Overall rank: 5,995th
Average Rating: 
86/100 (from 117 votes)
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Accolades:
Award Top 10 albums of 2022 (7th)
Award Top albums of the 2020s (110th)
Award Best albums of all time (5,995th)
Product Details
Availability

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Black Midi HELLFIRE Gatefold ROUGH TRADE New Sealed Black Vinyl Record LP
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Black Midi - Hellfire [CD]
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Black Midi - Hellfire Limited Edition Clear Red Color Vinyl LP
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Black Midi bestography

Hellfire is ranked 3rd best out of 6 albums by Black Midi on BestEverAlbums.com.

The best album by Black Midi is Schlagenheim which is ranked number 814 in the list of all-time albums with a total rank score of 2,274.

Black Midi album bestography « Higher ranked (5,995th) This album (5,995th) Lower ranked (58,051st) »
HellfireHellfireLive At KEXP

Upcoming concerts

Sep
06
Tue
20:00
Black Midi
Rams Head Live, Baltimore, United States. United States
Tickets from Ticketmaster Get tickets
 
Sep
07
Wed
19:30
Black Midi
The National, Richmond, United States. United States
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Sep
12
Mon
21:00
Black Midi
Saturn - Birmingham, Birmingham, United States. United States
Tickets from Ticketmaster Get tickets
 
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Hellfire track list

  Track ratingsTrack ratings The tracks on this album have an average rating of 84 out of 100 (all tracks have been rated).

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1.
Rating: 82 (54 votes)Comments: 0
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Rating: 88 (63 votes)Comments: 1
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Rating: 87 (61 votes)Comments: 0
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Rating: 90 (67 votes)Comments: 0
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Rating: 86 (57 votes)Comments: 0
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Rating: 73 (51 votes)Comments: 0
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Rating: 85 (55 votes)Comments: 0
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Rating: 85 (54 votes)Comments: 1
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Track pick Top-rated track as rated by BestEverAlbums.com members.

Hellfire rankings

Hellfire collection

Hellfire ratings

Average Rating: 
86/100 (from 117 votes)
  Ratings distributionRatings distribution Average Rating = (n ÷ (n + m)) × av + (m ÷ (n + m)) × AV
where:
av = trimmed mean average rating an item has currently received.
n = number of ratings an item has currently received.
m = minimum number of ratings required for an item to appear in a 'top-rated' chart (currently 10).
AV = the site mean average rating.

Showing latest 5 ratings for this album. | Show all 117 ratings for this album.

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11 hours ago archiemf  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 6586/100
 
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35 hours ago Puzzlr  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 26385/100
 
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3 days ago TripFarmer  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 235100/100
 
80/100
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3 days ago mostlymor  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 5,59579/100
 
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3 days ago Mmorrison22  Ratings distributionRatings distribution 1,42677/100

Rating metrics: Outliers can be removed when calculating a mean average to dampen the effects of ratings outside the normal distribution. This figure is provided as the trimmed mean. A high standard deviation can be legitimate, but can sometimes indicate 'gaming' is occurring. Consider a simplified example* of an item receiving ratings of 100, 50, & 0. The mean average rating would be 50. However, ratings of 55, 50 & 45 could also result in the same average. The second average might be more trusted because there is more consensus around a particular rating (a lower deviation).
(*In practice, some albums can have several thousand ratings)

This album is rated in the top 1% of all albums on BestEverAlbums.com. This album has a Bayesian average rating of 85.6/100, a mean average of 85.6/100, and a trimmed mean (excluding outliers) of 86.7/100. The standard deviation for this album is 11.4.

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Hellfire favourites

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Hellfire comments

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Rating:  
100/100
From 07/23/2022 06:24
There are a bunch of degens gambling at a horse track where the announcer keeps getting distracted - every other thing he says has nothing to do with the race at all, but is instead panicking about the rise of fascism and dangers of climate change. Nobody even notices. Then 2 religious extremist groups bomb the whole place simultaneously just as the race ends. There was no communication between the terrorists, the attacks have just become so common that the coincidence isn't even noted. Half of the debris and bomb fragments and body parts and shrapnel get auctioned off before the auctioneer stops for a quick meth/crack break to sell off the other half of the aftermath even faster. One corporation wins all of it and makes a collage out of the juiciest bits and sells it to an art collector for double what it spent. All of this gets reported on the news, but the closest any viewers get to empathy is in the middle of furiously masturbating when they orgasm so hard that they die and go to hell. They love it down there, the torture just keeps strengthening them until they're ready to take on heaven. So they get up there and slaughter everything handily before returning to earth and possessing all of the fascist leaders and all of the liberal leaders who finally see eye to eye. We have world peace for about 5 seconds until they decide the best way to deal with our problems is to burn through all of the fossil fuels as fast as we can and fill the oceans with plastic straight from the factories. They meet in this huge ballroom where they alternatively dance the flamenco and fucking waltz until long after all their skin falls off of their old dinosaur bones. And by waltz, I really do mean waltz. Others in faraway lands outside the ballroom are thrashing around, but not to music. They're just on fire. Most of them still don't even realize it.

That's what's going on sonically anyway. Lyrically? Don't ask me, I have no idea what's being sung about this time. I can't even say that I "like" it. I appreciate it. I'm "feeling" it. I sit in awe of it, I don't move to it. How could you move to it? What would you be doing, the flamenco, then waltz, in between headbanging (b/c that's literally what the music is switching between)? Like if the pyramids were outside my house I'd probably look at them multiple times a day and wonder how exactly they got there. That's this record - pyramids in between "Cavalcade" and "For The First Time" and I just listen to it a couple times a day and sit there and wonder how the fuck we got here. In a perfect world, we wouldn't be "vibing" to this. This wouldn't even exist because nothing would prompt the insanity and desperation and hopelessness behind it. If people there could hear it, they'd laugh and sarcastically ask, "what planet is this from?" The answer of course would be this planet. Enjoy your Hellfire.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +4 votes (4 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
Rating:  
90/100
From 07/22/2022 21:57
These kids are nuts.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +1 votes (1 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
Rating:  
100/100
From 07/21/2022 19:30
Wow. I'm absolutely speechless. The boys have really outdone themselves with this one. This might just overthrow Ants From Up Here for my aoty.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +8 votes (8 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
Rating:  
80/100
From 07/21/2022 17:56
I found ‘Hellfire’ to be a brilliant, fascinating and ambitious expansion from where the band left off on ‘Cavalcade’. I love how much they’re leaning into the world they’ve created and aren’t afraid to keep delving further.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +4 votes (4 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
Rating:  
90/100
From 07/21/2022 16:40
This is insane.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +6 votes (6 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
Rating:  
80/100
From 07/21/2022 10:28
Hellfire is very similar to Cavalcade – the changes from Schlangenheim stylistically are mostly consistent, even down the cover art – it's hard to consider this as anything other than a 2nd half. After the brief title-track opener, Sugar/Tzu just sounds like it picks up exactly where Ascending Fourths ends – its motifs are very close. Eat Men Eat is really the only truly chaotic song on this album (everything else is just very crisp and contained), but god it just transitions into Welcome to Hell superbly. Some transitions have a great ability to change what you focus on in the next song, and in this case the formalist absurdism of welcome to hell comes through very well in the context of the album (in isolation it's just a bit flat). Picton's vocals on Still are just not as interesting as they are on Eat Men Eat, but the song has a nice tonal shift in it. However, I remain unconvinced by the 4 last (very jam orientated) tracks that follow the interlude, but Dangerous Liasons and (especially) 27 Questions are the exemplars of the heightened theatricality of Hellfire over previous releases. In these cases emphasis on the theatre; 27 Questions is littered with musical theatre song tropes, and this is at least interesting but ultimately feels like just a gimmick introduced to their sound to mix it up a little – despite what on paper feels like a 180 turn, Black Midi on these tracks just sound like they're regurgitating the same things. Maybe this is the ultimate shortcoming of improv/jam composition, you can end up getting into comfortable terrain. At least the sound remains compelling.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +1 votes (1 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
Rating:  
100/100
From 07/20/2022 22:46
Brilliant in the most disarming way possible. Perhaps the most consequential band since Radiohead. I simply cannot get enough. Full surrender.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +9 votes (9 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
Rating:  
90/100
From 07/20/2022 14:08
These guys are at a whole 'nother level. Their 3 records so far have been just otherwordly.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +7 votes (7 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
Rating:  
100/100
From 07/16/2022 02:08
Black Midi’s songwriting skills, technical chops and musical creativity have all found their share of praise over the years, but never did I think they would coalesce and strengthen themselves so soon. Hellfire is phenomenal, a show-stopping showcase of the most daring band in the world taking their thrilling band of rock to the next level.

Every single one of the individual songs on Hellfire, possibly excluding the interlude ‘Half Time,’ is astonishing in its attention to detail. No stone is left unturned in bringing lush life to these accounts of sin. The performances, too, are exquisite. While Cameron Picton excels as always with two strong vocal performances, it is Geordie Greep who sounds most invigorated; his vocals on Hellfire are his strongest yet, ranging from Cavalcade-era crooning on ‘The Defence’ to Schlagnheim-y auctioneering in ‘The Race Is About to Begin.’ Morgan Simpson remains, as always, the best drummer in the world; his versatility, power and complexity on Hellfire continue to boggle the mind.

While Black Midi’s creative process does not contain ‘genre’ in its lexicon, I would argue that Hellfire fits fairly neatly into the category of progressive rock. However, they do not traffic in the sedentary sounds of modern prog on here. In many senses, this album is the purest essence of what progressive rock should be: not a stylized sound, but an ethos. Everything here is played with absurd technicality, but nothing is played for its own sake: all of these tremendous moving parts have a purpose of their own, and their inclusion furthers the musical experience. The tools Black Midi possess are utilized for the purpose of songcraft, and boy, does Hellfire have its fair share of songs. Each track is a miniature fable unto itself, again with the sole exception ‘Half Time;’ even those thirty seconds have a clear role of delineation within the wider anthology of misdeeds chronicled on this album.

If anything, this proves that Black Midi are among the greatest, most original bands of the 21st century. Comparisons to their friends in BC,NR’s masterwork Ants from Up There will no doubt abound, but the two groups have gone in separate artistic directions in spite of their personal kinship. Let us instead revel in the fact that we are blessed with not one, but two outrageously talented groups, each with wonderful discographies behind them and dazzling futures ahead.
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +10 votes (10 helpful | 0 unhelpful)
Rating:  
100/100
From 07/15/2022 12:34
The boys have become theater kids

Black Midi has gone full maximalist on this record and it's quite stunning. I loved Cavalcade and did not think at first that this album even came close, but this album takes many listens to fully digest. Cavalcade came off as immediately likeable to me for some reason, I think it's because it is a more straightforward album. No two consecutive seconds sound similar on this album, it's all over the place. And yet, each track is completely cohesive and the progressions make sense, nothing feels out of place.

I think this album is their best achievement yet. To think how complex their songs sounded back in 2019, how far they've come. Godspeed Boyos
Helpful?  (Log in to vote) | +8 votes (8 helpful | 0 unhelpful)

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