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Absorption - Enveloping Womb of Astringent Void

Enveloping Womb of Astringent Void
by Hutch at 05 December 2021, 2:32 PM

Death metal extends its chilling tendrils to all corners of the globe and Mother Russia is no exception. ABSORPTION is a two-piece outfit who formed in 2017 in Moscow. Releasing a demo in 2018 and their first split record the following year, the band has slowly worked on the line-up, shedding early members as the primitive shoots matured until vocalist, guitarist and bassist Mortician and drummer Necropatalog stood together, ready to move their music forward. “Enveloping Womb of Astringent Void” is the resulting debut, two years in the crafting and one that should strain a few necks upon listening.

Whilst the band are labelled primarily as death metal, there is more than a smear of the corpse paint on the five songs that comprise the 33 minutes on offer. Mortician’s harrowing screams certainly cross genres, his agonising roars contrasting with a guttural delivery for most of the album that is so demonic that Satan is likely to be launching a lawsuit to reclaim his larynx.

Unlike many of their peers, there is no messing about with classical or symphonic introductions on “Enveloping Womb of Astringent Void”. Instead, ABSORPTION begin the record with a face-melting wall of tremolo riffing which blasts a hole for the first few second. This is “Graven Screams in the Stones Engulfed by Darkness”, and it is aptly named, for it creates images of dark, gloom and terror all encapsulated by a ferocity that is second to none. The production is low-fi but works well with the vile aural assault that spews forth from the speakers. Necropatalog provides a brutal combination of blast beats and more straightforward drumming battery, allowing Mortician to deal with the rest.

The barrage is relentless, but ABSORPTION have managed to blend some melody, all that is necessary is such a visceral release, into their songs. There’s also a bit of, dare I mention it, groove present, which helps to propel the likes of “Dismal Disappearance” forward. It’s this element that gives ABSORPTION a little edge. The changes in tempo are also welcomed, with the change of gear to all-out thrashing likely to induce severe headaches from those who attempt to bang their head for more than a few seconds. It is ferocious.

Unsurprisingly given the names of the songs, “Enveloping Womb of Astringent Void” contains themes of death and its different manifestations. The brooding, sombre nature of “Mental Secretion” cloaks the atmosphere in a darkness from which there is no escape. It’s an impending bank of cloud that steals the sun on a summer’s day, and one that belongs in a horror movie. I think that would be the effect that the band were seeking. The riffs are impenetrable, the pace increases, and it simply scorches the earth with its power.

Two lengthy and pounding brutes finish this record. The bludgeoning “Irreversible Cruelty” is punishing in its intensity, with walls of blistering riffs cascading over the listener like water pushing through a burst dam, and the finale of “Miasmas of Boiling Ashes” merely decimates anything that is left with more feral beatings. It’s a vicious maelstrom of explosive death metal that is as sonically abusive as anything I’ve heard all year.

ABSORPTION’s views on death chime with those who inhabit their genre. “Enveloping Womb of Astringent Void” brings dark ideas and thoughts to centre stage. It’s an album that retains a rawness that many who enjoy extreme music will embrace and the overlap of black and death metal claws another wound which requires no dressing. It’s also worth checking out the artwork that accompanies the album with El Chulito’s layout based on the Necropatolog’s main oil-on-canvas picture and particularly elaborated concept

Songwriting:  8
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 8
Production:  7

4 Star Rating

1. Graven Screams in the Stones Engulfed by Darkness
2. Dismal Disappearance
3. Mental Secretion
4. Irreversible Cruelty
5. Miasmas of Boiling Ashes
Mortician - Vocals, Guitar, Bass
Necropatolog – Drums
Record Label: Talheim Records


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