Album: Abigor – In Memory

This is the first in a series of blog posts I’ll likely produce on a weekly basis or so. It’s part of an attempt to consciously analyze and classify my music collection, in the hopes that I’ll form a clear picture of what parts of it I can safely sell. A side-effect of this is that the Music section of this website should grow to contain more useful information, that is, my reviews and ratings.

Starting with Abigor’s “In Memory”, I realized, not for the first time, but never in this clarity, what I dislike about Black Metal. The main reason is really very simple, and does the music itself little credit: the type of distortion used in this form of music produces strong high frequency sounds, which simply hurt my ears.

I need to literally force myself to shut out that noise, before I can hear the music. And it’s really the frequency, as other types of music I listen to employ similar amounts of distortion, but are fine for me to take in.

So, quite naturally, I generally dislike Black Metal. Again quite naturally, I dislike Abigor. But I can force myself to listen past that noise, and to the music itself, so that’s what I will do.

I should start my review by stating that this record is not an album release in it’s own right. It’s a collection of five songs, two of which are cover versions, with the rest being alternate versions of songs released on their previous recordings. That alone makes this record more of a collector’s item than original art worth buying, but fans may find it worthwhile.

The first track is “Terribly Certainty” by Kreator, the second “Crionics” by Slayer. Both songs are executed fairly close to the original, but recorded rather differently. In regular Black Metal style, the distortion of the guitars is more jangling, vocals are screeching (though not as screeching as on the other three tracks), and keyboards and other effects are used to create an entirely different atmosphere to the songs as compared to the originals. Overall, I don’t think the different sound does these songs credit, as it saps a lot of their otherwise forceful nature.

What follows is regular Black Metal – riffs are simpler and more melodic than in the preceding thrash tracks, drums are played faster (in parts), but the rhythm of the songs is slower, vocals are far more screeching, and the melodic keyboard parts are more bombastic. Overall, the songs are fairly nice, but also pretty unremarkable.

So is this a record to buy? If you’re a fan of Abigor’s, then you might want to, but as far as I am concerned, while this record isn’t bad, it’s so unremarkable that it’s not worth any money.