U.S. death metal quartet Abysmal Dawn released their latest EP “Nightmare Frontier” on February 4th, 2022 via Season of Mist. The new material features unreleased tracks from the 2020 album “Phylogenesis”, one re-recorded track from the band’s demo work and two cover songs. Unquestionably the Los Angeles veterans show off with some top-notch quality here, bringing aggression and diversity to a whole new level with the line-up of Charles Elliot (guitars and vocals), James Coppolino (drums), Eliseo Garcia (bass guitars), and Vito Petroni (guitars). Their excellent musicianship makes use of gritty material with their signature style wired in a futuristic and modern sound. Abysmal Dawn has remarkably evolved over the last decade and the fact is that albums like “Leveling the Plane of Existence” and “Obsolescence” resulted in an obvious shift to a technicality.
“Nightmare Frontier” offers a variety of styles, based on the modern sound of U.S. death metal mixing grooves and bulky riffs altogether, displaying some new talents from this band. Although some might consider the EP as an improvement from its predecessor, personally I would say that the two actual songs are massive in scale and brutality, Abysmal Dawn is entirely cognizant of its craft. The robust side of the music is fully maintained, especially through Charles Elliot’s deep growls that are damn powerful. Considering the short length of the EP, of under twenty minutes, Abysmal Dawn managed to apply different formulas to the music.
The opening track “A Nightmare Slain” is a typical Abysmal Dawn song that is powerful fast and has the traditional style. The vocals immediately display the feral side, pumping up some hefty death metal riffs, and the semi-technicality that has become the signature of the band. The song has a dynamic pace and is highly satisfying. The solos are particularly catchy and played fast, the guitars infuse a large dose of heaviness and James Coppolino‘s drumming is fabulous and suited perfectly for the style of the music. Blast beats and double bass replete with furious riffs brought at full capacity, the melodic elements are a testament to the high performance.
“Blacken the Sky” is the most memorable and the highlight track of the EP. The re-recorded song is taken from the 2006 demo, although the main riff sounds brutal the song veers towards mid-pace. Heavy guitar chugging, cookie monster vocals, and energetic drumming take hold of this track. The guitar solos are used in the right moments, clearly proving the proficiency of the quartet. The song is shaped by powerful grooves and the interchanging pacing fits perfectly. The third track “Behind Space” is a cover song from In Flames, and is in overdrive with fantastic melodies and contagious guitar riffs that easily rival with the original song. While keeping the original template intact, Abysmal Dawn added their signature sound. Truly, Abysmal Dawn infused some spicy ingredients to the composition which effortlessly explores the melodic direction while the ferocity is still there!
Closing with a cover of the classic Candlemass song “Bewitched”, the guitars add just the right gloomy vibe and the clean vocals are epic. The slower tempos will make your head nod before the crushing riffs add the quality of doom metal. Abysmal Dawn on their latest EP “Nightmare Frontier” offers some impressive tracks that come from the energetic formula and melodies. If you have listened to their previous release then I strongly recommend you to give this EP a shot!
Release Date: February 4th, 2022
Label: Season of Mist
- A Nightmare Slain
- Blacken the Sky
- Behind Space (In Flames cover)
- Bewitched (Candlemass cover)
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