A self-described "brutal" death metal band from Rome, Italy, Hour of Penance formed in 1999. Influenced at first by a combination of black and death metal, Hour of Penance would soon move away from those styles, and -- influenced by Cannibal Corpse -- opt for a more up front and pummeling technical death metal style.
Their first demo hit the scene in 2000, and was followed by their first album, Disturbance, in 2003. By this time they had laid the groundwork by playing the Swedish death metal festival at Gothenburg and signed with Spanish label Xtreem. A well-received effort, Disturbance was followed by the album Pageantry for Martyrs in 2005, which won the band some scene awards. Hour did have to go through some lineup changes in their time, but they eventually settled on Francesco Paoli on vocals, Giulio Moschini on guitar, Silvano Leone on bass, and Mauro Mercurio on drums. The Vile Conception, Hour of Penance's third album, was released in 2008. Subsequent LPs Paradogma (2010), Sedition (2012), and Regicide (2014) saw the band continuing to hone their chops both in the studio and on the road, but the period also proved to be one of major personnel changes. By 2015, there were no original members left in the band, with guitarist Moschini, who has been with the group since 2004, acting as the most senior member. In 2017 the group released a new studio album, Cast the First Stone, which featured a lineup consisting of Moschini, bassist Marco Mastrobuono, guitarist/vocalist Paolo Pieri, and drummer Davide Billia. ~ Chris True, Rovi