We’re about as close to being locked into a horrible cycle of hopelessness as we ever have as humans, and yeah, if you believe certain pundits lying to you on TV while storms that used to be normal have turned into beasts, then you’ve already fucked off, haven’t you? Denial of disease, lack of understanding of climate issues and other purposeful buffoonery have us right at the edge, and so many don’t care.
Oakland-based death squadron Abstracter are living in the same plane as us, and their music always seems to take a new grim, downward turn every time they respond with new music. Their latest is “Abominion,” and as expected, it’s their most suffocating, violent effort yet, an album that might even make you consider just how safe you are at the very moment you absorb these beasts. On this fourth record, they unfurl a hellish wasteland where survivors must cling to whatever they can to stay alive, if it’s even worth it, and warn about where we may be headed if a large portion of living humans don’t get informed in a hurry. The band—vocalist Mattia Alagna, guitarists Robin Khan and James Meyers, bassist G., drummer Justin Ennis—creates one of their bleakest, most oppressive displays of doom-smothered death and crust that feels like a total burial of humanity. And we could use one.
“Eclipse Born” dawns in dark, pummeling waters that seek to pull you under, tearing at your flesh as savage growls lay waste, and the destructive playing drubbing. The sounds feel like they’re rubbing your face in soot, delivering doom-sopping death that makes it heavy and impossible to move, as you might as well just submit to its will. “Warhead Twilight” burrows into the mud with the growls scraping at your flesh, the playing laying a heavy bruising, and sooty meanness corroding your insides, leaving them aching. The track turns dizzying as the misery multiplies, the darkness folds your body in half, and the vicious growls take their toll, leaving your chest heaving and heavy.
“Tenebrae” slowly awakens as the growls batter, the playing lurches, and you are put to the test. The drumming mashes as the stormy weather thickens and increases, the song digs into your psyche, and the pace lights up, twisting you into a paste. “Abyss Above” runs a healthy 10:19, situated into a noise cloud that opens into beastly growls, the playing slithering, and everything else dutifully pounding away. Mind-skewing murk lowers and envelopes, a thick fog robs you of your senses, and a calculated beating ensues as sludgy chaos increases, and the bubble bursts, bleeding out dangerously. “Lighteater” is the final boss, a 9:16-long destroyer that starts in a murky haze, slowly crawling through the damp soot, lashing as the darkness increases. The shrieks smear as the skies are devoid of any hint of light, the abrasion become almost too much to handle, and the misery multiplies out of control, disappearing into a chasm of madness that could break anyone’s will to continue.
Abstracter have been merchants of torment and angst, but on “Abominion,” things seem to have taken a severe turn toward utter hopelessness. It’s easy to say there is no reason to be optimistic about our future, as the last 18 months or so have cemented that idea, and these guys are here to remind of us of that fact and let us wallow in the pain. This document will not leave you feeling good, will not fill you with optimism, and will not lie to you about reality, because there is very little on which to cling.
For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/abstracter/
To buy the album, go here: http://sentientruin.com/releases/abstracter-abominion
For more on the label, go here: http://sentientruin.com/