Strange Rites

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Band Name Abysme
Album Name Strange Rites
Type Album
Released date 25 September 2012
Music StyleDeath Black
Members owning this album0

Tracklist

1. Scribbled in Dust
2. Beyond the Seventh Door
3. Formless
4. Annihilated Memory
5. Gift to the Gods
6. We Shall Sleep
7. Terminal Delirium
8. The Third Day
9. Fallen Colossus
10. Remarkable Conqueror

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Abysme


Review @ GandhiEgo

06 November 2012

Early Swedeath tribute band? or something more?

Abysme! Had you heard the name before? Until I was served with the promo for their debut I hadn't. Sure you can't know just about everything and this Pittsburgh based band had only released a demo in 2009 before signing this year to Hellthrasher Records. Knowing that it features one ex-member of Funerus kind of raised my interest though and I was anticipating something as occult and doomy and ugly as the said band.

To some extent, Abysme filled these expectations. But don’t you expect something close to Incantation because this is nowhere close. On the contrary you could say that the US power trio has explored grounds closer to the Swedish heritage. The early Swedish heritage when all kinds of legendary bands were just being born or about to be born, when Amott had turned older Carcass material into yet another beast: Swedeath. In Abysme, as in early Carnage or Dismember, the Carcass legacy is omnipresent both in riffing and drumming. It's not yet your typical "Sunlight" production as there are many hints that trace back to Liverpool’s second most famous band.

Add a few drops of Autopsy thanks to some raw production and you think the guys would be on par with the likes of Morbus Chron, Necrovation or, to a certain extent (minus the Incantation thing) to Vaeseleth. Unfortunately Abysme stand a little below the aforementioned bands. They don’t have that “crazy” factor from Morbus Chron, they don’t display the "spirit” that Necrovation display and they’re far from being as occult as Vaeseleth are. So? Is it already the end of the story? Are we already good to go and skip this till the next best thing after Left Hand Path is yet to be released?

No. I know some people strive for excellence and will frown upon minor league players but I for one appreciate variety. Even though it’s true that the whole NWOSDM is starting to get old and tired, Abysme’s Strange Rites still is better that most of the concurrence. Should they hone their skills a bit more in terms of songwriting, they’d quickly get to the top.

To be a bit more specific, all the songs are pretty fine, fall under the 3 minutes mark and, in being so, have this catchy feel to it that made early Swedeath quite memorable. The problem is that the songwriting seems to use the same gimmicks over and over and nothing quite really stands out. Conclusion: this plays smoothly, replay value is even great but nothing really sticks out except… for the last two tracks which, incidentally, are also the longest ones. This is especially true of Remarkable Conqueror which, thanks to “more room” also displays more depth and feels quite similar to Horrendous' debut released this year as well.

I can’t help but feel that Abysme, should they want to “expand” some more their music and not just make it this great-to-be-played-live thing they've done, could walk in the footsteps of the better bands out there and probably have the same progression that Necrovation had from debut to sophomore. It’s up to them now to do so!

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