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After 5 solid albums, Aborted released Strychnine.213, and it was horrifying. Utterly boring with nothing in the way of memorability. Fast forward 2 years and Aborted gave us this, which could quite possibly be my favourite EP of all time. Finally Aborted have brought back the ferocity and intensity of Goremageddon, combined with the catchiness of The Archaic Abattoir.
Svencho's vocals on Strychnine sounded old and tired, and it was genuinely depressing, as he is one of my favourite death metal vocalists. On this, he's finally got back his charisma. His grunts as always sound unique and his raspier highs perfectly compliment his growls. He also adds a new technique to his already impressive arsenal. A mid-pitched shriek that sounds like he's trying to whisper and shout at the same time. It's like nothing i've heard before and it sounds great.
The riffs are crushing and groovy, while still maintaining that pseudo-melody from Archaic and Slaughter and Apparatus. The solos (which I believe were played by Ken Sorceron of Abigail Williams fame) are outstanding for the genre. Highly technical and proficient without ever touching on flashy showing off. The bass can be heard, but only if you've got your bass setting turned up to max on quality headphones, and the bassist seems to just follow the guitars anyway. The band also employ more of those crushing breakdowns that kept Goremageddon so varied and brilliant, and again they are used sparingly and only when needed.
The drums are perfect. Dirk Verbeuren plays them exactly how they should be played. Blast beats executed superbly to compliment the faster parts, and slower paced fills for the grooving, slower parts.
Samples have also been brought back, but this time around Aborted have used them in the wrong way. Take the end of From A Tepid Whiff for example. The outro contains a sample of someone taking a shit. Totally unnecessary.
The EP closes out with a cover of the title track from Entombed's Left Hand Path. It's a very good cover, and the band have done well to make it their own as opposed to just releasing the original played by different musicians.
Apart from the samples, this is a perfect EP and well worth adding to your collection if you're a fan of Aborted and/or brutal death metal. A worthy comeback from death metal royalty.
I am a fan of the old school Aborted sound. Engineering The Dead and Purity Of Perversion are the only two full albums that I actually love. Some of Goremageddon is alright, and some of The Archaic Abattoir is alright, everything else bores me, except this EP.
It's not quite like early Aborted, but it sure as hell kicks the shit out of Strychnine. The guitar work is creative and original. Eran and Ken pull off amazing harmonic sweeps in "From A Tepid Whiff," and the solos are worthy of applause. My favorite part about this EP is that the band has perfectly structured build ups before any really heavy part. The title track is a perfect example of what a good song structure should be like. It's basically a formula: Solo half way through the song that leads into a great build up before an awesome heavy riff.
Another part I love about this EP is the track "A Cadaverous Dissertation." In my opinion this song is the perfect Carcass tribute. Compared to General Surgery, Exhumed, and any other goregrind band that is heavily influenced by the grind gods, Aborted really pulled off the Carcass sound in this one, while still maintaining their own signature sound at the same time.
The new lineup is simply superb. Sven is obviously the founder/master-mind of Aborted, but the sound of the music is always changing due to constant lineup changes. I sure as fuck want Sven to keep this lineup because the music that they make is the best thing I've heard from Aborted since Engineering The Dead. The music isn't exactly the same, obviously, but to me it still just has that raw bad-ass goregrind sound that makes you want to kill shit. The band also started using creepy samples before some of the songs, which is something we haven't seen since Engineering The Dead. They've used other types of samples in their later work, but not ones that sound like they're from old zombie flicks.
I don't want to say that any old school Aborted fan will like this EP, because it's not a whole lot like old school Aborted. I however, love it, because it sounds good, it shows great musicianship, and it's not crap like Strychnine. I guess I shouldn't call Strychnine crap; it's listenable, but the band has done much much better. And this EP is a HUGE step up from their 2008 release.
I should probably make this very clear from the outset, even though you'll figure it out after about 3 lines anyway. I'm not a huge fan of Goremageddon or early Aborted. Yeah, it's good but I've always been of the view that the later stuff was far better. They finally found their own little niche sound, at atmospheric blend of brutal and melodic death metal with samples and a darker tone and the odd cursory nod back to their goregrind days and I loved it.
I'm not a fan of much melodic death metal or even technical/brutal death metal. It's bloody boring but Aborted were able to make it interesting to me at least. I was hyped up to no end about the follow-up to Strychnine ever since it came out. The short gap between albums had made me hope they could bring out another one quickly and keep the pace up.
So when I heard about Coronary Reconstruction, I was bitterly dissappointed. The Strychnine era line-up had been dissolved and, even worse, they'd brought back their old drummer from the Goremageddon days. I looked at the cover art and was just deflated. The last few had been ultra polished, intricate artworks which were awesome to look at and they had something missing from most DM artwork, subtlety. This wasn't subtle at all, it was just so GENERIC. The madman just reeked of retreading on Goremageddon and it just looked so uninspired.
The biggest nail in the coffin for me was Sven's description of the new stuff. "It's just like Goremageddon!". They had totally abandoned the new style. That was it for me. I started to phone round caterers, as there was a funeral to arrange. Aborted was as good as dead to me. This really smelt badly of Aborted trying to claw back some credibility in the eyes of their narrow-minded fans. I felt that Aborted had shat themselves at the fact the majority of their fans were too thick to understand the concept of progression and poured scorn on their last albums. It was such a shame to see Aborted desert something which was original and a great idea, just because it wasn't seen as being as popular as their old stuff.
But I don't really have a clue about what Sven is going on about. I thought they'd lost all the experimentalism? Apparently not, there's loads of samples. The dissonant atmospheric guitars are still there. The title-track is a great departure from blast-and-grind. In fact, overall, this is probably as far removed from their early stuff as Aborted have got yet. Yes, there's a good dollop of blasting all over the place, and the Carcass influence is even more prevalent than it has been in a good while but most people complained about the melodic DM elements. A Cadaverous Dissertation is pure Heartwork through and through, it steals elements from so many songs on that album, it's unreal. It's bloody baffling.
The song Grime is a straight old school Death Metal song. It has that dundun-dundundun rhythm which pretty much built Stockholm back in the early nineties. It has Aborted elements, and a modern production, but it is pretty damn traditional and punkish in parts, and it's certainly a highlight. The other Old School nod in this release is a cover of Entombed's Left Hand Path. I don't really have anything to say about this. The production is too modern, the playing is just too technical for my liking and the synths just aren't as cool but it's pretty hard to ruin Left Hand Path. Even a lounge jazz version of Left Hand Path would be immense so I have to give this a good rating. Forgettable, but still good.
In conclusion, this isn't Goremageddon. Not at all. Don't be fooled by Sven's assertions that this is a retread to the old days. The modern-day production means it just CAN'T sound like that album. Also, there's too much deviation from the Goremageddon formula. Yes, it might have the old drummer but don't be daft. I can't believe people are hailing this as being totally fucking awesome and flaming Strychnine in the same breath because this is pretty much exactly the same as Strychnine except it's less effective. If you think this is a return to the old days you are an idiot. It's just a case of something being repackaged (The generic boring cover art) and sold as being "old school" and you people have fucking lapped it up.
So, it turns out that my enquirires with the Co-op funeral directors were premature. Aborted have somehow saved themselves from a one-way ticket to the grave because it turns out that they were wrong about this stuff. Don't fall into the same trap. This is just like Strychnine but a bit worse. It's still good but nothing absolutely classic.
This was the first time I heard stuff from the Belgium based death metal-lers, Aborted. From seeing their releases so far and the reviews that the releases have earned, I guess that they are a pretty well known band amongst avid death metal fans. Before I begin, let me say that band has not failed to impress me. Well, let's move on.
The song-writing on this album is sick. Lot's tempo changes, breakdowns and buil-ups and much diversity present. And the songs feel well constructed too and generally flow well. The vocals are really sick (in a good manner ofcourse!). There are different types of vocals present on this EP rather than a single type, monotonous vocal type. There are growls and some screeches (which are really good) and I think an unique type of gasping/growling vocals. The vocals really stood out!
The guitarists play a lot of different riffs and a song is never based on a single riff. There are fast riffs and there are slow riffs. Some tremolo picked riffs which are fast and some pedal type, palm muted riffs which ensure a lot of head-banging! The leads kick ass too. The solos completely fit in with the songs and are fast and memorable too.
The drummer is awesome. From rythymic parts to blast beats, he does it all! There are a lot of fills too which mingle in well with the rest of the instruments. The bass guitar though is nearly inaudible. Where the fault lies is the production. Like many death metal bands, the bass is completely drowned out, as mentioned before. The guitars should have been a little high too.
Apart from the production the fault, this EP is quite good. Though there are a couple of weak riffs, the EP manages to hold your attention till the end. The Entombed cover is icing on the cake! Not something to kill for, but pick it up if you come across it.