Thursday, 4 August 2011
Review: Hateful Abandon - Move (Todestrieb)
Released on Ipswich based black/dark metal/industrial label Todestrieb Move is the follow-up to 2008's Lungs which saw the duo of Swine and V/M drop the harsh black metal noise of their debut Neverending Black Torrent of Death (released under the name Abandon) in favour of cleaner guitar tones channelled from a new-wave, dark-pop and post-punk perspective. Heavily shaded by the shapes thrown by the likes of Dead Can Dance, The Cure, and Joy Division it almost annihilated their existing audience of knuckle dragging metalhead noiseniks and cast them somewhat adrift of definable categorisation. The definition of Hateful Abandon as a musical entity, and their position in regards to any kind of historical lineage or current scene is something mainman Mart Brindley (aka Vintyr) explained in assertive no uncertain terms when I sent him some questions for their inclusion in the UK Black Metal Week feature on the blog in December. Read that interview here.
Simply put, this band stand alone.
There's little trace of black metal left on this new album, and other than the vocals which can peak out into hoarse roars there's very little Metal here at all; there's more similarity to current band like The Horrors or Cold cave here than any of the recent strains of black metal bands. Yet despite that it is one of of the most violent, angry, aggressive and imposing albums to have crushed the air from my speakers in a long while. It's not about defining or submitting to genre tropes to aid the listener in understanding the themes of the record, instead it is all in the vocal delivery, the atmosphere that overrides all the instruments contributing to it. A heavy Swans atmosphere hangs over the record a well
The rise and fall of intertwined guitar/piano crescendos in Human Clockwork is like something from latter day Mogwai (and someone else can tell me the precursor to them). Overlapping doomy chug of bass in Copper Foundation overlaid by scrabbling guitar lines and alternate rasped and glowering vocal.
Huge throbbing momentum of Poundland that sucks up distorted debris and sonic carnage from the earth scorched by its approach. Has Godflesh written all over, shakes off the comparison, stamps a boot into its face then elevates out of the claustrophobia by adding an echoing choral chant into the final moments. The final track Lost is another of the album highlights, digging in to another emotive key lead finale that loops over into cathartic oblivion, retaining the hostility of the rest of the album, easing it out through a fading coda until there is nothing left.
The musicianship and song structuring in the album is phenomenal, the relentless procession of ideas is as intense as the music itself. A total experience.