ABORYM – Psychogrotesque
- by Peter Loftus
- Posted on 29-10-2010
“Psychogrotesque” is a daring odyssey into the bleakest recesses of the human soul. The opening samples hint at a dark and unhinged narrative as we begin a journey of schizophrenic intensity, a journey that takes us from post black metal, seething with industrial overtones through introspective passages ornamented with jazz sax and electro-flavoured synth. A glance at the song titles tells us that “Psychogrotesque” is a concept album. It is, in fact, supposedly a single song broken into ten parts.
After that description, you’d be forgiven for thinking “Psychogrotesque” sounds like a pretty dodgy proposition. But Aborym are not your average band. The compositions are excellent, blending all of the disparate elements into a polished whole that is fresh and original yet maintains enough familiar hooks to be completely accessible. Producer Emiliano Natali, who has worked with such luminaries as Eric Clapton and John Zorn, has given the album a million-dollar sound. Professional is the best word to describe it, but you might need to hear the album to find out what that means. The guitars and keyboards are masterful throughout and Bård Eithun creates a storm behind the drums. Add a host of collaborators and you’ve got character and creativity in spades.
Having heard my fill of thrash revival clones, death metal copyists and generic black metal bands this year, I found this album to be a much-needed breath of fresh air. There is so much to love here, and it speaks lots that such an intense and insane album can be crafted to have such a wide appeal. Definitely recommended.