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Album Reviews : Cryptic Abyss – Feed ‘Em To The Sea

By on January 27, 2016

cryptic abyss - feed em to the seaMelbourne’s Cryptic Abyss are a band I’ve been following for a little bit now, since first discovering them close to a year ago. In that short space of time, the band has continued to grow and mature – both musically and in their position as one of the standout up-and-comers of the local scene. Following on from the release of their debut EP ‘Into the Abyss’ in 2014, this year sees Cryptic Abyss release their anticipated debut full-length album, ‘Feed ‘Em To The Sea’. With their roots being in groove metal, ‘Feed ‘Em To The Sea’ showcases Cryptic Abyss as they take that next step and fully embrace their death metal side. Yet on that same token does this album retain that rough-as-guts, downright headbangable groove section they are known for. The death metal aspect seems a natural evolution in Cryptic Abyss’ music, as tracks such as “Reduced To Bones” demonstrate. It all moves along naturally hand-in-hand with their usual style, and swims alongside in perfect pace with the infectious groove-laden riffs. And that is all before it all at once explodes in your face like an IED, initiating a vicious thrash section that could make Kreator blush.

To talk about the music for a moment, that is one of the areas where this album most excels. Cryptic Abyss work extremely well as one cohesive unit, blending the various rhythm sections from the drums, vocals, and guitars into a very aurally pleasing, yet suitably brutal effort. Each song flows very well into the next, with ‘Feed ‘Em To The Sea’ also exercising lead vocalist Calvin Cobby’s talents as a songwriter. It isn’t exactly high concept, but it is brutally honest and wholly embraces its violent and negative socio-economical lyrics. In songs such as the single “Unblinking Eye” (which features an excellent guest spot from Chris Themelco of fellow Melbourne act, Orpheus Omega), this song serves perhaps as the most direct in utilising this noted lyrical approach. Yet with that being said, Cryptic Abyss aren’t afraid to add a little bit of a humorous flavour to their aural assault; culminating in the tracks “Let’s Get Smashed” (which is a song about exactly what you think it is, drinking) and the last song on the album, “Piggin'”. The latter intrigued me, and after speaking with Calvin about it, actually discovered is actually the band’s loose take on an old ’80s Aussie horror film called Razorback. With other songs such as “Murder of Crows” and the like, I noticed a pretty distinct theme throughout the album of almost being a take on nature finally saying enough is enough.

Exercising Calvin Cobby’s growing talent as a vocalist, this album showcases some of the strongest death growls I have heard in some time. It is never static and never fails to get this reviewer headbanging. With each member of the band adding to the album as a whole, the drums are a treat to the ear (utilising breakdowns alongside double bass to great effect); the bass further ties up the heavier side of the record; and, the twin guitar assault adds a slick rhythm and power to the album.

Furthermore, this album was recorded and mixed by Chris Themelco at Monolith Studios, Melbourne, and then mastered at The Panic Room, Sweden. So you can guarantee the production is a highlight! It is some of the best you’ll find for a local, independent release. ‘Feed ‘Em To The Sea’ proves itself an upfront and dangerous, no bullshit, feast for the ears for death metal fans. Get this record.

About

Jonathon is an aspiring fantasy/sci-fi novelist and music journalist. Thanks to the influence of the music he grew up with, he has always possessed a keen interest in metal and rock. He is also a huge fan of mythology, legend, and folklore from all across the world. You should follow him on Twitter.