"Season of Death" comes third, and I'd be lying if I didn't say this gave me a "Black Sabbath" vibe (as in, the band's self-titled song.) The cadence of the guitars, the ominous thunder sound effects, the deliberate pacing, it's all there for the first half. The song varies in the second half with a faster groove, and starts to diversify itself to good effect, with solid bass and drumming all around, though the latter use of the thunder effects feel thrown in, and the abrupt ending doesn't do much for it. The first half feels too derivative, but the second half helps bring it home! The EP's title track "To See Eternity" closes things, and at a whopping 9:07 runtime to boot! This lengthy track starts with more black metal intensity a'la "Asunder", but it sounds cleaner and heavier all at once, if that makes sense. The marching eerie sound is a bonus, and Wyrn's straightforward heavy guitar riffs are always a plus! At the same time, similar instrumental sections are extended to lengths that get very repetitive, without much structural variance.
This especially strikes me as a song that could have been severely chopped down without losing anything substantial, which doesn't take anything away from Wyrn's solid performances and the brutality on display! I just find that the song would work better if it was shorter and less repetitive, but fans of Abhorrent Forest's black metal material will definitely enjoy the closer!
So, how do I sum up Abhorrent Forest's third EP? Well, it's definitely a return to form for black metal fans, and pound for pound, their strongest overall release to date! I especially loved "Plague", which showcases Old Man Wyrn's musical diversity very well with a grand, ominous sound that shows a lot of potential beyond just black metal and ambient compositions! In more traditional black metal territory, the rest of the album delivers the good with strong guitar work and assaulting riffs and drum tracks, and I liked that the cymbals were toned down from "The End of Life" too. That all said, the title track dragged on too long without any major changes in tempo or structure, "Season of Death" is almost too Black Sabbathy in it's first half, and I am still curious to hear how this material would sound with vocals. Abhorrent Forest are on an upward trajectory for sure, and I'm very curious to hear what Wyrn has in store next, so buy or stream "To See Eternity" at the above links!
I hope you guys liked this month's CD review! Next month, barring a sudden huge album release, I am planning to keep with new CD reviews via looking at defunct local alt-hard rock trio The Din's posthumous live album "Suburban Sendoff", which was released in February but held until this point due to our 6 month anti-bias buffer (having just reviewed their last studio album in December.) Look for that at some point next month, and stay tuned for weekend concert previews next! Thanks everyone!