Posts tagged bLAST bEAT!
I’ve been meaning to put up a George Kollias video for a while. I dig Nile (in smallish servings!), and George is definitely a pack leader in this style. I’m eager to hear more from his solo album.
Man, that Marco guy can’t play in time worth a damn 😉
It’s a little difficult to distinguish the two in the mix, but there’s some killer stuff in this Drum Channel excerpt.
I just read this and audibly guffawed: “Mike Portnoy Bashes For Dimmu Borgir”.
Something tells me Mike’s born-again, 12-step preaching will not go over too well with the boys in Dimmu…
I wish I could be more excited by this, but I have reservations. I suppose it’s no more bizarre than Marco Minnemann playing with Necrophagist (2), but it seems like a cosmic dissonance to me. I have no doubt in Mike’s ability to do this gig, though I hope he’s prepared for the YouTube baboons to begin the cackling battle cries. Oh, I can foresee it so clearly: “dude portnoy sux he can on;y ply blast beet @ 210bpm”. Et cetera…
This review is long past due. I got this album the day it came out but kept forgetting to do a write-up!
I don’t even know what to call this kind of music anymore. At this point in its evolution, it’s really a sub-genre of a sub-genre of metal. Don’t dare call it black metal; the purists will flambé you alive inside a centuries-old church. (I know, it’s a tired stereotype, but I couldn’t resist.) No, as soon as you can decipher lyrics or even instrumentation in a recording obviously not made for $50 in some brooding Norwegian dude’s mom’s basement, it’s no longer black metal. I guess we’re calling Dimmu “symphonic black metal” now? In any case, Dimmu Borgir has long been far afield of the origins of black metal, and Abrahadabra is their biggest, most polished album to date.
The bad news is that Simen Hestnæs (I.C.S. Vortex) is no longer in the band, and his absence of is conspicuous. If there was a single reason for my 3.5/5 rating, I think it might be the lack of Vortex. The good news is that the new drummer, Dariusz “Daray” Brzozowski, is a monster. Better news: Gone are the ridiculously phony-sounding triggered drums of Hellhammer…
Daray was the drummer for Polish death metal band Vader. I am not familiar with much Vader, but what I’ve heard has been pretty badass. Daray’s drumming on Abrahadabra is impressive. It’s not particularly unique like Nick Barker on Puritanical Euphoric Misanthropia, but there’s some neat stuff here, and his blast beats will definitely melt your face.
The production is incredible and sooo un-black metal: huge, crystal clear, expensive. Many lambaste the inclusion of orchestras in rock/metal, but the Norwegian Radio Orchestra (Kringkastingsorkestret) adds an indispensable dynamic and texture to the songs, and it makes all the synthesized strings and such of albums past sound cheesy in comparison. (The hardcore fans are seething right now, but listen to Abrahadabra, then listen to Enthrone Darkness Triumphant and imagine how much better it would be with a string section. Am I completely off base?)
Also against the tenets of black metal are the lyrics. Previous albums were cartoonishly “evil”, but Dimmu Borgir seem to being moving in a different direction. The lyrics of Abrahadabra are dark for sure, but by being more mystic, existential, misanthropic than outright beasts-and-pentagrams malevolent. This, in my opinion, is much more interesting.
Tracks of note include “Born Treacherous”, “Gateways”, “The Demiurge Molecule”, “A Jewel Traced Through Coal”, “Renewal”, “Endings and Continuations”… Actually, that’s more than half the album—and the other four tracks are good too—so I guess I liked all of it!
Abrahadabra isn’t the type of album to create converts to the genre, so I recommend it only to fans and the most open-minded of listeners.
I’ve been a big fan of Gene since high school when I read the Death Metal Drummers Round Table interview in Modern Drummer and immediately bought Death’s Symbolic. That album was a a big influence on my early playing. Soon after that I got Strapping Young Lad’s City. And a cavalcade of incredible recordings has followed…
I haven’t seen the entire Atomic Clock DVD yet, but the preview looks pretty awesome. As soon as I’ve seen it all I’ll post a review.