Review – King Abyss – Snake Oil

Staffordshire hardcore tinged thrashers King Abyss release their debut album Snake Oil this Friday, so we check out this long awaited release…

The album kicks off as expected with all guns blazing, ‘Weapons Of Mass Delusion’ launches you straight into the King Abyss world and makes sure you can’t catch your breath, following in on all to quickly is the title track and single Snake Oil, that continues to pummel, at a slightly slower pace, and is a more brooding track, perfect mosh pit material with brooding heavy sections between unleashing chaos, next track Loathe has a little bit of a Death Metal vibe in places, especially in the early section possibly due to a slightly growly vocal delivery in places and breaks up the hardcore style vocals really nicely.

Next track Disdain is a real deviation from what has come before, I guess you’d class this as a ballad, clean chords and lots of clean singing, intricate solo’s and very atmospheric… I’m not sure what I think about it to be honest, it’s done really well, but it kinda stops me in my tracks every time it plays as it’s just such a different pace and tempo! this continues with the little ‘Interlude’ that on vinyl would close out the A side, but digitally feels a little out of place.

But don’t panic, next track Fear The Dead comes swinging back into your ears with a proper beast, getting me right back to the pit for another round of brutal riffs and pummelling low end that continues through into ‘A Short Drop And A Sudden Stop’ which is possibly my favourite track on the album. Eyes Always watching is next up and once again makes you want to get in the pit… as those who checked out the single already know.

Finally we get to the closing track Nibiru, where the band change pace again, I don’t like to do comparisons, but to my mind this is King Abyss’s version of Metallicas – ‘Orion’ a 9 and a half minute atmospheric broody journey into an astral plain… I’m not sure on the context of Niburi, possibly the more astronomical use of passing or equinox, or maybe the potential planet that is floating in space ready to wipe out earth with a bump…. I’m guessing it’s not the planet from Star Trek Into Darkness!!

All In All, this is a great release from the boys, where it hits hard it is absolutely brutal, packed full with riffs and dirty bottom end, but with a few surprises along the way that I for one didn’t really expect, which maybe not everyones cup of tea are interesting and accomplished and add a whole extra dimension to the album.

Don’t let Snake Oil pass you by, make sure you pick up a copy on BANDCAMP, or stream from Friday, and catch the guys out in early March with Imperium and Dog Tired, or with Must Kill in June.

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