Originally written by Ramar Pittance
Aborted seems to have abandoned the mission statement. You know, the one the goes like …
Here at Carcass Lust Inc., we pledge to bring you the highest quality facsimile of everybody’s favorite British Gore Grinders. Through the use of pneumonia inducing production, a dynamic duel vocal attack, and delightfully ironic harmonic lead guitar parts, we insure that the legacy of our forefather’s shall never die. However, we at CLI are more than faceless hacks, we also promise to add our own personal flavor to our product to ensure each album is a worthwhile investment. We thank you for choosing CLI as your primary gore-grind provider, and please, enjoy our shit.
The Archaic Abattoir continues Aborted’s trend of de-Carcassification, and is witness to the band embracing an entirely modern sound.The evolution is subtle. Aborted are still a death metal band, so to the untrained ear it may be taxing to figure out just what the hell makes this album any different from anything else this band has done.
We’ll start first with the production. While fortunately having escaped pro tool’s soul devouring sheen, The Archaic Abattoir certainly comes off sounding overly processed. This will certainly make the album more digestible for a few, however, it has also dulled the edge of most of the riffs on the album. Instead of stabbing the listener with a successive downstroke, the riffs seem to bounce about lightly with all the fury of a gently lobbed beach ball.
Vocalist Sven De Caluwe continues the approach found on the latest In Quest and Leng T’che albums that he lent his throat to. His mix of bong rattling gutturals and gruff hardcore barks are serviceable as usual, but may vex diehard Aborted fans as they serve as another sign of the band’s evolution.
Sven’s vocal performance isn’t the only trace of In Quest to be found on The Archaic Abatoir. While nowhere near as mechanical nor mathematical, songs like “The Gangrenous Epitaph,” “Voracious Hemoglobinic Syndrome,” and “Threading On Vermilion Decept” show a similar taste for marching drum syncopation. I can’t blame Aborted for shifting gears in the songwriting department, as the up tempo moments reminiscent of prior albums are mostly forgettable. “The Inertia” is The Archaic Abattoir‘s strongest track, as it sees the band melding the the more charismatic riffing of their past with their more modern sheen. It at the very least proves that their new formula isn’t entirely devoid of merit.
I don’t want to come off as a disgruntled Aborted fan, blighted by the band’s new direction. The real issue isn’t that the new Aborted aren’t a Carcass tribute group any more. Rather, it’s that in the process of stepping out of their primary influence’s shadow, they seemed to have lost any sort of personal identity. Ironic, I know. While adequately mixed and professionally executed, the overall presentation leaves me limp. Despite this band’s strong pedigree, there’s nothing on this album that screams, “listen to me.”