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Abdullah : Snake Lore

So many bands make great music but have hardly ever memorable moments. This is not the case for Abdullah. Ever got the goose bumps when listening to a particularly memorable or powerful track? On this mCD you get plenty of those intense moments that send chills down the spine. There might be only 6 tracks on the whole CD, but every one of them is of high quality.

It should probably be noted that you will find both the first, 'The Path To Enlightenment', and sixth track, 'The Black Ones', on the album that was released right after this mCD. The two releases are actually quite different from each other, but yet it seems that the tracks in question fit just as well in both releases.

Abdullah has been influenced by many bands within both the stoner and the doom side of the genre border, naming Black Sabbath, Trouble and Saint Vitus as some of them. Plenty of these examples can be found when the music varies between the bouncier stoner riffs, and over to heavy low riding doom. All of this bathes in an atmosphere that seems to hover in both the old school and the modern. The typical riffs connecting Abdullah to its roots, have sometimes been complemented by industrial sounds like radio voices. The classic Black Sabbathic vocals that could easily be mistaken for Mr. Osbourne himself are full of reverb. In one place the vocals have even been distorted into a hissing snakelike voice. The music could probably best be described as the great link between old and the new stoner/doom.

A laid back vibe is found throughout the mCD, except on one song, which actually defies most of the music on the album. The fifth track, 'The Sickness Unto Death', reminds me more of Reverend Bizarre than any of the influences mentioned by Abdullah. This track is a depressive and crushingly heavy one with slow riffs. They do not leave their niche as they do have sections of the track that are more typical for the rest of the album, but in general the rule is that this track would be preferred by fans of the really heavy kind of doom. This band also has a rich set of lyrics. Abdullah could at times be seen as Buddhist in their repeating quest for enlightenment and truth. This search involves a whole range of questionings and experimentation on both religion and society. The lyrics may also roam into depression, criticism and other minor topics, but they always hold a grip on their main topic, enlightenment. The effects in the music, like the industrial elements, often play a role in the lyrics. Like the portrait of the devil that the hissed vocals in track two, 'Distant Lights', give. The music is overall very well mixed with the lyrics, creating a sound of unity between the two. Truly this release is skillfully put together with both care and patience.

But the really great thing about this release is that it will appeal to fans of all kinds of stoner and traditional doom fans. Fans of Black Sabbath, Saint Vitus, Electric Wizard, Pentagram, Kyuss and Reverend Bizarre, possibly loads more, would find something of their liking here. In many years time when Abdullah and their temporaries will have become old school, this release shall most certainly be one of the classics.

Reviewer's rating: Unrated


Tracklist :
1. The Path To Enlightenment
2. Distant Lights
3. In The Belly Of The Beast
4. Firmament
5. The Sickness Unto Death
6. The Black Ones

Duration : Approx. 45 minutes

Visit the Abdullah bandpage.

Reviewed on 09-02-2006 by Arnstein Petersen
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