Carcinoma open the split, with four tracks lasting 15 minutes in duration.
Carcinoma play an underground, atmospheric form of black/death metal. Well-written and full of grim texture, the tracks on this split mix atmosphere-building with a more direct approach that sees the band go for the throat as effectively as any extreme metal proposition.
Chaos and mayhem are Carcinoma’s companions, but even when they’re giving free reign to them, the band still manage to project an atmospheric aura, one of mood and layering over straightforward brutality and barbarity. The music is bleakly dissonant in places, yet lacks the impenetrability that this style can frequently have. This is due to the fact that dissonance is only one tool in the band’s toolbox, one that they use well, of course. They also know how to write a really good direct riff too.
The band’s production is well-rounded and has a kind of sickening warmth to it that’s both off-putting and alluring, like something that’s rotten, yet still curiously captivating.
Featuring a very blackly attractive mix of ferocious aggression and atmospheric savagery, Carcinoma have made a very positive impression with these four songs. I can’t wait to hear more from them in the future.
Abyssal’s side also contains four tracks, but with a longer playing time of 22 minutes.
The one man juggernaut that is Abyssal has opted for a more old-school death metal approach on this split, belching out songs that reek of abandoned crypts and decaying tombs. This is doomy death metal with a thick atmospheric aspect, and the blackened death metal of Abyssal is a different, less chaotic and savage affair than Carcinoma’s.
These songs are heavy and mood-driven, with macabre melodies and deep, abyssal growls seeming to rise up out of a murky sea of bleak, crushing distortion. The music of Abyssal is like a relentlessly advancing natural disaster, completely swamping everything in its path, with a self-set pace that’s as devastating as it is inexorable. This is apocalyptic music that wants to drown the world in nightmares, and it sounds like it’s truly capable of it too.
This really is a top quality split release that shows what a fertile place the UK’s extreme metal underground is.
Make sure you check this out.