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Abjection Ritual: Soul of Ruin, Body of Filth

Abjection Ritual’s third album shows the band reaching beyond their last two efforts both by adding more components to their sound and attempting to shatter expectations of genre and style. For the most part, it works but I think some listeners will have a hard time making sense of how everything fits together. The band was always a strange hybrid of death / doom / industrial / noise / ambient and electronic sound anyway, but this album shows them trying to expand their sound even more.

One of the biggest changes comes from the addition of guitars, bass, and live drums to the mix. Bands like this don’t always use live drums on their recordings and so adding them here could be interpreted as a big experiment. It’s odd to think of drums as experimental, but that’s what they are here. I thought they gave a great of texture to the band’s overall sound. I was especially fond of the drumming on “Body of Filth” because it was so rhythmically interesting. The guitars also add interesting layers to the band’s sound. “Blood Mother” has a good riff and “Ruin” has some decent lead parts. The guitars are mostly blended into the mix pretty well but when they stand out they sound good.

The other big change comes from the band’s attempts to expand their musical vocabulary in terms of sound clips, noise, and other electronic elements. Not all of them work terribly well but there’s no denying that the band wants to see what else they can do with sounds of all kinds. I thought the biggest risks came from juxtaposing different parts of a song in ways that made them seem like different tracks altogether. “Blood Mother” did this best, but there are other examples. Some tracks rely a little too much on noise. I was not terribly fond of “Carnassial Passage” for that reason. The best tracks are those that keep the sense of movement going strong. There are also multiple moments on this album in which human voices talk in the background. I assume they are passages from movies or television shows, but they could be original to this album. I liked those moments in general but sometimes they went on too long.

The best track on the album is “Lamentations,” a relatively short piece that features two female voices performing a very straightforward melody and harmony. It is haunting and beautiful in ways I found deeply engaging. As opening tracks go, this one is nearly perfect. It’s also a great lead-in to “Body of Filth,” another solid track. Another highlight was definitely “Old Sins,” probably the best realized of all the band’s compositions here.

Even though I wasn’t completely sure what to expect from this album, I thought it was a surprising and fascinating musical experiment. It was not always satisfying but it was definitely engaging. Recommended for fans of hybrid genres that blend noise, industrial, electronics, and doom.

Track Listing:
1. Lamentations
2. Body of Filth
3. Blood Mother
4. Deathbed Conversion
5. Ruin
6. Carnassial Passage
7. Old Sins

Added: May 21st 2018
Reviewer: Carl Sederholm
Score:
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
Hits: 297
Language: english

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