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Abdullah : Graveyard Poetry

Like some of you, I've had the promo of this for some time. Now that the official release is at hand, I think its time to bump this one up again so it can get the attention it deserves!

Abdullah's label, MeteorCity, has truly widened the definition of stonerrock, or stoner doom, or what have you, this year. Diverse releases ranging from the b-movie psych of the Ribeye Brothers to the stoner-licious sounds of the Mushroom River Band to the melodic doom of Ohio's Abdullah are mainly united by their high quality, as opposed to any allegiance to a specific sound.

One might say the same about Abdullah. I've been an enthusiast since the 'Snake Lore' days, and I've loved their brand of melodic doom from the start. For some reason these guys remind me of New York doomsters Slow Horse far more than they remind me of any easy old school doom examples you might think of. It must be the clean, melodic vocals and literate lyrics. And speaking of literature, vocalist Jeff Shirilla pounds those thoughtful lyrics out like he majored in English, ha ha. That even extends to the song titles, such as 'The Whimper of Whipped Dogs' and 'Behold a Pale Horse.' If you can name the authors of those 2 works for me, I'll buy you a beer next time we meet.

If you've been paying attention to reviews posted around the net, you know that Abdullah is breaking out of the doom ghetto now, at least to an extent. Yeah, the doom is still here, what with instant classics like 'Behold a Pale Horse' and 'Salamander,' with its irresistible descending riff. But Abdullah has injected a big ole' hypo full of classic 'Maiden and 'Priest into the mix: check 'Strange Benedictions' and 'Guided by the Spirit.' And dig the death growls in the signoff tune, 'They, the Tyrants.' Who knows where these doomsters are going to end up?

One thing that nobody's talked about is the production. As an old Pere Ubu fan, I'm very familiar with the work of producer Paul Hamann. As far as I'm concerned, his name should be spoken with the same reverence as Billy Anderson's, Scott Reeder's, or even Steve Albini's. Paul's super-experienced at getting a powerful, natural sound. It wouldn't surprise me if he uses tubes in the recording process.

If you like clean, melodic doom with a heavy injection of old-school metal, you'll love Abdullah. Check it out, baby!

Reviewer's rating: Unrated


Tracklist :
1. Rune
2. Black Helicopters
3. A Dark But Shining Sun
4. The Whimper Of Whipped Dogs
5. Deprogramed
6. Pantheistic
7. Beyond the Mountain
8. Salamander
9. Strange Benedictions
10. Secret Teachings Of Lost Ages
11. Medicine Man
12. Guided By The Spirit
13. Behold A Pale horse
14. They, Thy Tyrants

Duration : Approx. 64 minutes

Visit the Abdullah bandpage.

Reviewed on ??-??-???? by Kevin McHugh
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