Abgott - _Artefacts of Madness_
(Helvete Records, 2006)
by: Jackie Smit (9 out of 10)
Like a schizophrenic take on early Emperor and the more memorable bits of _Blizzard Beasts_-era Immortal, Abgott come swirling out of the murky depths of... well, nowhere special, really. The quartet's last two releases showcased a boatload of potential, yet had all the longevity of a mustard burp. But this -- this is something altogether more distinguished.

Still coal black at their core, Abgott's onslaught is more brutal and determined than ever. Better still, their proclivity for experimentation appears almost supercharged, and combining a particular fondness for jazz signatures with the maelstrom of misanthropic aggression conjured up by the likes of "Experiment in Evil" and "Dimensional Labyrinth", they create a similarly unhinged atmosphere to the one that lent Deathspell Omega's _Kénôse_ its maverick charm. While not eclipsing that release for landmark quality, _Artefact of Madness_ very nearly gets there with songs that are progressive, consistently locked on target and doused with a production lacquer that straddles a perfect balance between feral and polished.

On a level plane with Gorgorth's intensity and more engaging than the last Aborym -- truth be told, unless Deathspell Omega decide to surprise us all with a new release before the end of the year, Abgott has precious little competition for black metal standouts of 2006.

Contact: http://www.abgott.co.uk

(article published 5/10/2006)

12/26/2006 J Smit Abgott: Ceremony of Opposites
9/8/2009 C Beskeen 8 Abgott - Godfather in Black
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