Blacklab – Abyss (Review)

Blacklab - AbyssThis is the second album from Japanese doom band Blacklab.

Taking a jagged, almost experimental approach to doom, Blacklab’s music is a curious fusion of Black Sabbath, Boris, and The Stooges. This is dark, raw, and peppered with hardcore and noise rock influences.

Glacial, monolithic distortion and droning mood is paired with moments of upbeat pained punk and mid-paced rumblings that sound spiky and dangerous. Blacklab’s music is very much of the underground in feel and delivery, and it has an endearing earnestness to it because of this. There’s more melody here than I initially expected, although this isn’t the music’s defining feature. No, that would be a combination of the rough fuzzy guitars and the impressively individual vocals.

The songs have a lot of personality, not the least part of which can easily be attributed to the singer’s aforementioned charismatic voice. Her vocals range from harsh screams to soft crooning, with a variety of different styles touched on in between.

Overall this is an enjoyable piece of work, albeit one that I have to be in a particular mood for. The band have successfully created a barbed, snarling slab of doom, one which more than earns its keep.

Check out Abyss, and get sucked into its deep, dark embrace.

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