Haunted Cenotaph – Abyssal Menace (Review)

Haunted Cenotaph - Abyssal MenaceThis is the debut album from Polish death/doom metal band Haunted Cenotaph.

Abyssal Menace contains 41 minutes of gloomy old-school death metal. With a hefty amount of doom metal elements, and a Celtic Frost influence, this is an enjoyable listen for anyone that wants to explore OSDM that has a different perspective on the genre than that of many of the band’s contemporaries.

This really does sound like something unearthed from the very early 90s, and feels quite nostalgic in that sense. The band have a primitive, atavistic take on the style, and sound honest and authentic because of this.

The music is slow-to-mid-paced and concentrates on crafting dark moods and chunky riffs. When melodies are used they’re sinister and grim, creating macabre atmosphere with ease. Haunted Cenotaph are at their best the slower and more menacing that they get, and tracks like longest cut Miasmatic Malodour play to all of the band’s strengths, (which is why it’s my favourite cut here).

Vocally, we get a wide-ranging mix of growls, ragged shouts, howling, and all other manner of near-unhinged vocalisations.

Abyssal Menace is a recommended listen for anyone who enjoys the old-school, but wants something more authentically individual in tone and therefore a little different to many death/doom offerings out there.

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