With an enigmatic, yet enticing album cover, this release drew me in like a moth to a flame. With a few varying and slightly contradictory descriptions of what was contained on this release, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect before pressing play, but knew this was something I wanted to explore. What I found was an unexpected and engaging album.
Soul of Ruin, Body of Filth combines dark ambience, power electronics, drone, doom, and industrial into its harsh embrace. Think of a band like Neurosis at their darkest and most rhythmically percussive, add to this the bleak horror of Khanate, mix in some of the industrial experimentation of Gnaw, throw in a bit of Godflesh and Swans, and slather with dark ambient and electronic influences. The resulting cocktail is a vivid and barbed collection of industrial doom songs.
The biggest thing missing from most noise/electronic/etc. bands for me is drums or percussion. I often think that if a certain band or other added this into their electronic soundscapes I would probably like the genre way more than I do. In a way this is exactly what Abjection Ritual have done here. Soul of Ruin, Body of Filth makes the most sense if you think of it as an experimental noise album that’s been enhanced not only with drums, but also guitars, bass, and harsh vocals; almost like a post-metal template has been overlaid onto a noise/drone foundation. It works very well indeed.
These songs have been constructed and composed well, almost to the point where it seems like the industrialised music has created itself. The tracks feel like they have unnaturally generated themselves out of an idea that the band merely germinated. Now, after a period of initial growth, they have attained a sentient awareness and are in charge of their own form and shape. That they have chosen to manifest themselves in the ways that they have on Soul of Ruin, Body of Filth is a compliment and a reward for the band’s faith in their creations; these songs have been allowed to spread and crawl, rather than being halted by a kill-switch. The result is a fascinating and satisfying collection of songs that offer the listener a dark, yet rewarding listen.
Soul of Ruin, Body of Filth is a compelling album, one which is worth exploring and learning.