Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Necrosadist - Abstract Satan

Though I enjoyed Necrosadist's previous EP, The Alpha Nihil, I have to be fair and say that I was somewhat unsure whether Menthor and Dictator would be able to craft an album full of material that was at once interesting and never tedious - both characteristics which reared their head on the EP. I headed into this hoping that Necrosadist would hone their songs to better combine the traditional black metal riffing with the textural experimentation in a more consistent and fluid combination. Once again Daemon Worship Productions is behind this release and predictably the release is branded to appeal to the underground fan... Another black metal release, more sleek packaging and the standard parameters have been fulfilled.

So is "Abstract Satan," interesting and nonconforming to stereotypes? A two minute introduction leads to the title track which is, unfortunately not that interesting and the first hint we hear of some of that textural exploration of the EP is in third track "Rising From The Earth," which decides to phase in and out like a dusty record about four minutes through the six minute track. It is like a woman with a baggy sweater smiling at you. Maybe there is something nice underneath later on in the evening... I predicted fourth track "Golems of Flesh" would be a more typical black metal track - it pretty much is. It's one of the shortest tracks on the album at a meager four minutes and even manages to squeeze in thirty seconds of blast-beat potshots.

The album has some stronger tracks though like "Obsidian Sphere," which musically is atypical for black metal but not for Dictator since at times it hearkens back to some of the material he did with his eponymous project. It lashes out and phases away into some Mediterranean / Egyptian melody three-quarters through and though this particular theme is not reminiscent, the reversion to melody is something which Dictator did on Dysangelist. Even amidst four ten minute tracks, there was a heavy emphasis on the melodies and phrasings. We see that at times in this track as well as in "From The Virulent Entrails of the Virus Christ," which not only has one of those drawn out 'Yeaaahhhhh' head bobs that accompanies all novel song titles, but it may be the most memorable track on the album. From the moments when the bass shines through the murk to the Trey Azagthoth solo that sounds like dolphins communicating with their dead ancestors to the weird fabrics stitched together for the second half of the song, it is more of what I was hoping from Necrosadist on this release than the previous tracks

The overall tone of the album is quite strong for a "raw" black metal band. It's not really that harsh. The guitars are smoothed out like some watered down plaster of Paris. It sounds more like an early 90's death metal album than a black metal album. If it weren't for the vocals and the myriad dying banshee noises, porpoise mating calls and reptilian squish-squashing the album could sound like Incantation being played by those species. But in the end, when I consider the whole album, I can't help but feel that the whole thing is quite average in the end. There are so many bands doing this; the murky black metal swamped in reverb and blackness with occult imagery and "experimental" leanings. It just so happens that most of these bands do not create a full album worth of interesting and captivating material. Plenty of worthy parts, sure, but nothing complete. There are plenty out there that will love this but for me, it's been there done before and it doesn't hold up to other projects in the same garage.

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