Review Summary: Modern tech death that favours breakdowns over technical wankery.5 of 5 thought this review was well written
Formed in 2010, Miami, Florida technical death metal outfit Abiotic immediately got to work by recording and self releasing there debut Ep "A Universal Plague" the very next year. Shortly after they were signed to Metal Blade Records and we're ready to record the first full length album of their young careers "Symbiosis", which essentially is the Ep re-recorded and remastered with three new songs.
Clocking in at just over forty-three minutes "Symbiosis" is a unrelenting slab of technical deathcore that offers little breathing room through its entirety. The intro track which starts off a creepy little piano then delves into intense tremolo picked guitar riffs and a mini solo over a breakdown serves a good start before the hard hitting lead single "Vermosapien" punches you in the face with massive chugging riffs, Ridiculous gutturals and shrieks, nice lead guitar work and even some audible and smooth bass lines. Although mainly sticking to the formula I mentioned above they occasionally do they're best to stay away from predictable song structures, such as on the track "A Universal Plague" which features a neat jazz solo that wouldn't sound out of place on a "Cynic" record. Another track worth mentioning is "Hegira", a six minute instrumental track that contains some of the albums best guitar work as well as a guest guitar solo from Steven Funderburk of the band "Wretched".
Despite the technically proficient guitar work and groove laced riffing of guitar duo John Matos and Matt Mendez its bassist Alex Vasquez who really steals the show with his incredibly smooth bass lines that add so much in the more melodic and progressive sections featured throughout the album where he proves he can hang with the best that the genre offers. I really wish there was more to say about the drumming on the album but it just seems they are trying to keep up with the stupid fast tech death pace and offer little to creativity. Last but not least vocalist Ray Jimenez vocal performance is devasting and may also be the hit or miss part of the band due to his over the top extremity. He is either using his ultra low growl or a piercing shriek that may become grating after a while.
Now let me get to the biggest issue this album has, which is a complete lack of memorable guitar riffs due to the fact they're all incredibly short . Also if they eliminated some of the open chord chugging they utilize the songs could do so much more. So all in all, Abiotic have created a relatively solid debut Lp that is sure to satisfy fans of modern tech death and deathcore and has me looking forward to future releases.