Review Summary: Dissonance and melody find a sweet spot on Abhor’s debut full-length, resulting in a welcome addition to the progressive death metal scene rather than a forgettable by-product of it.
After an EP that slipped under everyone’s radar, New York-based metal band Abhor have made a more impressionable foray into the scene with a freshly released self-titled album. “Freshly” really is the appropriate adjective here, seeing as how despite the inherent redundancies within the genre (or more specifically, the subgenres of progressive and death metal), Abhor
sounds refreshingly authentic. The production is bright as day and the instrumentation is never anything less than lively. Groove elements take place in the form of off-kilter breakdowns, such as the final minutes of ‘Non Sequitur’ where triplet guitar jabs are superimposed over traditional downbeat bass hits resulting in a devilishly mesmeric groove. The closer ‘Final Hour’, which reaches almost ten minutes in length, goes through all the twists and turns that the genre is known for – clean guitar refrains included – and aptly wraps up the dense, tastefully wanky experience with impetuous confidence and glee. Abhor are utterly self-aware, drifting to and from odd time signatures and rapid double-bass segments with ease. Dissonance and melody find a sweet spot on Abhor’s debut full-length, resulting in a welcome addition to the progressive death metal scene rather than a forgettable by-product of it.