Review Summary: Don your Entombed patch laden denim jacket and get pissed.Abandon All Life
is an exercise in immediacy. Nothing is veiled during the album’s 17 minute runtime as the band begins with a beguiling and thunderous wall of oppressive heaviness that does not relent until the final moments. Each track is gravid with a sense of dread and repulsive anger, spread over 10 cathartic bouts of intensity. Much like 2010’s Unsilent Death
it works perfectly as Nails hold no punches with their excessive delivery.
Often likened to a strange amalgam of Entombed and Drop Dead, Nails provide everything there is to love about “heavy” music, all while retaining a tight musical core. At a cursory glance, it’s pure unbridled chaos. Well, sure it is, but Abandon All Life
brings together a bevy of great ideas whilst still providing an unmatched energy. Produced by Kurt Ballou, the album features a vicious and filthy sound that works well with the overall tone. The riffs kill and Todd Jones is a behemoth of a vocalist. With the added brilliance of Taylor Young on the set, the album acts as a force to be reckoned with. Combined, Abandon All Life
is a beast of an album that is both engaging and dismaying.
“In Exodus” opens things up with absolute precision. With an infectious pace it feels like all hell breaking loose. But it’s the rapid fire changes in tempo and mood that truly show that Nails know exactly what they are doing. Whereas many bands may fall into a trap of each short burst of a song feeling the same, the 10 tracks found here are perfectly distinct from one another. With varying lengths, the songs may see condensed peaks and valleys or merely erupt over the course of 24 seconds. It’s impressive, to say the least. All of this culminates into the album’s final act “Suum Cuique.” The song moves full of purpose, deliberately and succinctly. At times it lumbers while at others movingly briskly. With a frenetic guitar solo to bisect it, the song stands as the perfect closer and an immense song in its own right.
With their sophomore record Nails stand proudly as one of the most interesting and concise hardcore bands around. Full of thoughtful songwriting and brilliant instrumentation, Abandon All Life
is a hellish and exigent work that grabs hold and refuses to let go.