Abyssal – Antikatastaseis ALBUM REVIEW

This has been heavily hyped and spammed on my corners of the internet, which is probably why I put this off for so long. Generally if an album is talked about as being the greatest thing since sliced bread, and it’s posted over and over and over again until you get tired of it, that’s generally an album you want to avoid in my experience. But I went ahead and listened to this anyway in my attempt to catch up on this years releases, and I must say I’m relatively pleased. Abyssal does a great job of buildup and creating tension. The drum intro to The Cornucopian gave me goosebumps of the scared kind and perfectly setup what came after it. That’s a unique aspect of this album. Lots of albums are good at creating tension and buildup, but more often than not the setup doesn’t actually compliment what comes afterward. They can individually sound great, but together they don’t necessarily fit, or feel like a logical step. Every setup to the knockout punch feels natural and logical, which is a great strength about this album. Unfortunately, this is done in a clear pattern that goes along the lines of *uuuuuuuuuu with fuzzy noises**ambient section* and repeat. It sounds more like a bunch of individual ideas rather than flowing together. While not all albums have to be a coherent string of evolving tracks, I feel like variety in the way they went about these ideas would’ve greatly helped. What I will give Abyssal credit for is by having variety of different ways to use that pattern, be it the building drum intro I mentioned before, or the setup on the last track. The final track Delere auctorem rerum ut universum infinitum noscas (is it really too hard for this band not to make every title word vomit?) is built up by basically just noise getting louder and louder. Sounds pretty simple, but it’s simplicity is what makes it so unnerving. It’s so impersonal, so unnatural, not like something someone would consciously create. And the craziest thing about it is what follows, which is tonality of all things! Cavernous dissonance is what you previously think is everything to do with this album. But then you get thrown a very well deserved bone at the very end and you get to hear something most people feel like they should hear anytime they listen to music, which is tonal harmony. I really feel without that this would’ve been a tiring experience not worth listening to. Antikatastaseis still has that issue even without the one bit of tonal music. It feels like for the most part it’s a one trick pony, and while that is a good trick, you can only watch it do that trick so many times before you want to move on to the next trick, no matter how many variations of that trick they do.