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Aeons Abyss – Impenitent

Aeons Abyss
Impenitent
by Liam Easley at 20 November 2019, 12:38 AM

Death Metal is a genre that is supposed to be aggressive in nature, however if Death Metal that invokes agitation is what you seek, then look no further than AEONS ABYSS’ debut, “Impenitent.”

Aeons Abyss is one of those bands that has a few good songs among a lot of really bad ones, and there’s no way to sugarcoat it. “Darkness Falls” was one of the album’s singles, and it is probably the best track here. The song has a variety of very good riffs, and its structure is much more congruent than the rest of the album.

Bloodless,” the other single, has a lot of great potential, especially in the riffing near the end, but as much as it stands out among the other songs on here, it falls victim to a few writing flaws. “Hashasheen” was the other good track, but it was only good because of the atmospheric section and most of what happened after it. The writing for this particular track was fairly good, compared to other tracks.

When it comes to songwriting, there are so many things that can go wrong, and this band seems to make a lot of rookie errors, which is odd coming from a band that wrote this material back in the 1990s. First of all, a lot of this music has zero direction. “Agony Vision,” “Impenitent,” “Tried by Ordeal” and “You Shall Be as Gods” are the largest sources of directionless riffing on this album.

Within its first minute, “You Shall Be as Gods” stars some of the best riffing on the record. This quickly dissolves into mindless, basic riffing without repeating any of the interesting material that was first presented to the listener. The track goes through multiple sequences, none of which progress into anything interesting. Each section is just placed in so that the song goes at a levelled-out pace without ever reaching a climax. In fact, it never attempts to climb to a climax.

The second songwriting error is the riffing itself. “Discorporated” features riffs mostly on the lowest strings that match the lyrical structure perfectly. This just makes it sound too synchronized. There are no interesting rhythmic mashups when a band writes like this. If anything, it’s lazy writing.

Along the line of riffing errors, “Agony Vision” features one of those “riff, pause, lead, pause, riff, pause, lead, pause” patterns, but the leads are far too awkward. The amount of poorly executed three-note progressions set to 4/4 time signatures scattered around the album was harsh. These and multiple other examples add to the pile of not just bad songwriting, but infantile and beginner-level riffing techniques.

A third songwriting error can be attributed to how this band is seemingly incapable of ending some songs properly. “Impenitent” and “Tried by Ordeal” both feature endings with some sort of buildup. Whether that buildup is a breakdown or a solo, they each only have around 30 seconds to shine. In other words, they barely develop before just being cut off. “Bloodless” had a strong ending before the final note rang out without actually having provided closure.

With poor riff writing, no direction and a plethora of other technical errors that are too many (and also too unimportant) to list, this album fails to impress. In fact, it’s almost frustrating to listen to. The fact that the programmed drums are the most remarkable instrument in the mix really says something. Actually, the drums sounded very real; I was surprised to see that they were programmed.

Words like “sadistic” and “brutal” are used to describe Death Metal in an oxymoronic way. Saying a band is “brutal” is a compliment. However, this is not true in the case of Aeons Abyss’ debut album because “Impenitent” is brutally painful to sit through.

Songwriting: 3
Musicianship: 3
Memorability: 5
Production: 8

1 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Impenitent
2. Discorporated
3. You Shall Be as Gods
4. Darkness Falls
5. Tried by Ordeal
6. Bloodless
7. Hashasheen (Assassin)
8. Agony Vision
Lineup:
Steve O’Brien – Guitars & Bass
Paul O’Brien – Vocals
Record Label: Independent
     


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