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Abhoria - Abhoria Award winner

by "Metal Mark" Garcia at 18 March 2022, 12:58 PM

Black Metal was born in Europe in the late years of the 70’s (no one can deny the importance of VENOM on it), and spread throughout the world during the second half of the 80’s, and came out of the underground in the early years of the 90’s. The Black Metal scene of the USA was born in the late 80’s and early 90’s, but had an evolution that was pretty different from European schools: in the beginning, North American acts carried a heavy load of influences from German Thrash/Black Metal acts as SODOM and DESTRUCTION. But as time passed by, US Black Metal fractured and the diversification took its toll, because today you can have raw Black Metal acts from USA, but some melodic Black Metal as well, or those that work in the middle, as ABHORIA, a trio that hails from Los Angeles, and that is releasing their first album, “Abhoria”.

Their music can be described as a form of Black Metal influenced by the early acts of the 90’s as EMPEROR and SATYRICON, or in other words, bands that have care to deal with arrangements and that aren’t using a musical approach with a single type of tempo. So be prepared for a band that has a lot of to offer, with charming and morbid melodies (that are created by the guitars instead of keyboards), but always with that chilling-cold aggressiveness, a good technical work (as usual, an inheritance of the US Metal School that permeates every Metal band from the country), and a massive energy. The album was recorded, mixed and mastered by Shane Howard at Sawn & Quartered Studios, in Denver (except for the guitar parts that were recorded at La Maida Vale Studios, in Hollywood). All sounds nasty and aggressive, keeping some instrumental tunes that are particular from Black Metal; but things are really sound defined, so the understanding is guaranteed.

Their songs are really very good and point to a band that can offer too much for the genre, as can be heard on moments as “False Idols” (a massive storm of energy and aggressiveness, but with very good arrangements in the guitars), “Mountebank” (the nasty and oppressive ambience of the song is really charming, and the rhythmic changes created by bass guitar and drums are really great), “Byzantine Promises” (what excellent combination of aggressive tempos with spear riffs, creating very good instrumental layers where the vocals can show its great work), “Grave Expectations” (this one shows excellent chilling-cold catchy arrangements and a morbid ambience), and “Sunless”. But the album is solid as a wall, so hear all the songs, because you won’t regret the experience.

The band is really great on their first album, so “Abhoria” isn’t an experiment. It’s a reality, so welcome ABHORIA as a revelation of the genre.

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 9
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. False Idols
2. Mountebank
3. The Thorn
4. Byzantine Promises
5. Grave Expectations
6. Unevangelized
7. Hollow
8. Sunless
Walthrax - Vocals
Vor - Guitars
Koszmar - Bass
Jaud - Drums (session)
Record Label: Prosthetic Records


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