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Oh my god this is bad... - 20%

GTog, May 11th, 2012

If you're a fan of Abigail Williams, turn away now and don't look back.

Or rather, look back. Look back at their entire discography up to this point. Hey even better, listen to it. Any randomly chosen track off any previous Abigail Williams album is superior to Becoming in its entirety.

It opens with the overly long and overly indulgent Ascension Sickness, which is repetitive, derivative black-ish metal. Clocking in at over 11 minutes, it is simply 6 minutes or so of song padded with black metal wankery. Sound of blowing wind, suspended tuneless guitar notes, all the little tricks to try to create a creepy atmosphere. The rest of the album doesn't get any better, so I suppose it at least performs the job of an opening track by setting up what's to come.

Take the third track, Elestial. (Skip #2, it's just boring.) Elestial is musically identical to the opening track. It's like they didn't even try to write a different song. It forgoes the whooshing wind noise, which is why it's shorter, but aside from that it's the same song. Is it supposed to be a thematic bridge of some sort? Don't you need a theme before you do that? Elestial then fades out reeeaaallly slowly, pointlessly padding the song length.

The fourth track, Infinite Fields of Mind, is again the same song. No atmospheric intro this time, but don't worry, some meandering guitar bit eats up the entire first two minutes of this alleged 10 minute track.

Three Days of Darkness is where Ken & Co. seem to have decided that since the song filler is working so well, why not try some album filler? The track is just whooshing sounds effects for 2 1/2 minutes. Inexcusable from any band.

In case you're wondering if the iTunes exclusive track Akasha can redeem this mess in any way, forget it. I don't know how to describe Akasha, but if you listen to the other six tracks you'll know that it fits right in.

Ken Sorceron took over the production duties himself on this one, and if you ask me, really made a hash of it. It's deliberately lo-fi, deliberately atonal, and deliberately trying to sound natural. I'm reasonably sure that "deliberately natural" is an oxymoron. This is not my taste in black metal, this is tr00 kvlt kiddie stuff without the eyeliner.