Greek stalwarts Abyssus are back with their long-awaited sophomore ‘Death Revival‘. For more than a decade Greece has been a prolific purveyor of death metal in Europe and the scene is crammed with plenty of underground bands. Since its late formation in 2011 Abyssus has released a number of EPs and split albums building up the experience that gave them a solid sound. Laying a foundation of death and thrash metal has given the band the ability to recycle organic riffs. Abyssus’ songwriting is mainly influenced by bands like Obituary, Death and Sadus. This is why when you listen to ‘Death Revival‘, you will immediately confront the savage guitar riffs and the violent chaos swirled by the guitar department and the solid drumming work. The band returns with a coherent lineup of Kostas Analytis (vocals), Panos Gkourmpaliotis (guitars), Kostas Ragiadakos (bass), Chris Liakos (guitars) and Jan Westermann (drums).
‘Death Revival‘ represents that classic early nineties style of death metal. There are lots of nods to early Obituary and these influences appear to have spawned something quite classic and potent. At its core the songs are violent with many tempo changes, the guitars provide a quality slab of old-school riffs and it feels like Abyssus is tackling the early wave of thrash metal. The riffing is the album’s strength and it perfectly deliver raw energy. The solos maintain an impelling force. Even though the band is not intending to reinvent themselves, the sophomore has that raw concept of falling between death and thrash metal.
The opener ‘Metal Of Death‘ conveys clear nuances to Obituary, though the riffing will please the die-hard fans of eighties thrash metal as well. The guitars are played at relentless speed. The drums on this track are fast and leave no room for breakdowns, just solid drumming, pure and straightforward. There are plenty of moments where the solos steal the show. The album rather highlights the excellent growling of Kostas Analytis. Within the short length of the sophomore, the guitars unleash a concrete slab of solid death metal riffing. However, the most interesting aspect about the new album is that some of the song titles like ‘The Ten Commandments‘ and ‘Uncertain Future‘ hold an undeniable inspiration from the likes of Death and Malevolent Creation.
The songwriting and musicianship are at their peak level of coherence. The guitars yield a very catchy sound with tremolos layered over the bass. The fast riffing leads to many chaotic moments that almost reach the absolute pinnacle of aural aggression. ‘Death Revival‘ is a sort of crossover between Obituary’s ‘Cause of Death‘ and Death‘s classic album ‘Leprosy‘. While these elements make the album stands out, ‘Uncertain Future‘ is an unstoppable violent onslaught. Unlike the previous tracks this song conveys the classical feel of early Kreator.
‘The Beast Within‘ is a solid display of pure death/thrash metal aggression. The old-school approach simply proves that Abyssus is ahead of many retro bands. The unique drumming here rampages through the mid-tempo section where the double bass is pummeled intensively and the bass guitar adds an excellent filling to the drums. The savage and sadistic growls sound absolutely ferocious. While the solos add an extra oomph to this song, the guitar offers some rotten death metal riffs. ‘Genocide‘ and ‘The Witch‘ are both great in terms of delivery and execution. Abyssus mixes both of these elements in such a professional way.
There is a range and versatility to the drumming, which is one of the unique features of this album. The middle Eastern intro of ‘Genocide‘ shows many traits of these Greek stalwarts. The key moments here highlight the solid aggression of the drums moving into rapid tempo and the guitar solos unleashing at full charge. The album closure ‘When Wolves Are Out To Haunt‘ begins with weird noise until the rhythm guitar provides some ear-worm melodies, setting the right tone for this track that gradually picks up the pace. ‘Death Revival‘ is a great album and by far the band’s best outing. This is highly recommended for fans of old-school death metal.
Release Date: 21st, January 2022
Label: Transcending Obscurity Records
- Metal of Death
- The Ten Commandments
- Uncertain Future
- The Beast Within
- The Witch
- When Wolves Are Out to Hunt