Abyssal Ascendant - Deacons Of Abhorrence

Abyssal Ascendent continue their Lovecraftian apocalypse with their second chapter of "Chronicles Of The Doomed Worlds" called “Deacons Of Abhorrence”. Just like the first offering, this French group continues down the death metal path in the vein of groups like Akerfeldt era Bloodbath and Barnes era Cannibal Corpse with mid paced, chugging death metal that is a little more cleaned up on the production so it doesn’t quite have that raw buzz saw guitar sound, but sounds right at home with the mid 90s style of the genre. One thing that has changed for the group is the addition of a new guitarist- Lucien- who continues to bring a raw, evil tone to the music that suits the ritualistic tone of magic and darkness that the atmosphere creates. Vocalist Florent continues his usual growl to great effect along with his guitar work, and Fanny adds some black metal tinged backing vocals here and there among the bass. As a result, those that have heard their first album won’t hear too much deviation from what chapter 1 had to offer, but there are some additions that make "Deacons…" stand out a little more.

The atmosphere has been enhanced quite a bit by symphonic elements added into the tracks, no matter how cheesy or cliché they may be. Tracks like ‘Coven Of Agony’, ‘Wombs Of Torment,’ and ‘Nilgh’ri…’ feature excellent choir sections that make the album feel like a Septicflesh or Shadow Of Intent opus and really enhance the death metal elements, taking Abyssal Ascendant above the typical ‘Cannibal Corpse’ level of music. Of course, there is plenty of that too with tracks like ‘The Dweller Awakens’ and ‘Martyrs Of Mordiggan.’ Here, the band blasts in full fury with thick drums and some pretty groove oriented riffs with vocals that sound almost exactly like something off “The Bleeding”, so this is about as straight forward as one can get with death metal. For those who just want aggressive, yet clear music, these tracks are for them.

Other tracks have a raw approach that crawl as far back as the late 80s such as the opening ‘Offering Flesh To The Stars’ Here the band take the atmospheric edges and opts for a slower, doomy pace, creating an dramatic tone with addition of the symphonic elements. This is probably Abyssal Ascendant at its finest craft, and while they do have brief moments like these spread through the album, it really shines here and serves as a strong opener for the album. The only downside is that listeners may be disappointed that tracks like these aren’t fleshed out more as the album progresses. Tracks like ‘March of the Wind Walkers’ are chugging tanks of doom, slowly working their way with the doom laden riffs but not softened by the symphonic elements, and will probably appeal to those who like groups such as Incantation or Disentomb. The result overall is some pretty good Lovecraftian death metal that takes some of the better elements from the 90s and throws them in together with some atmospheric edge. Hopefully part 3- if there is one- will round out the story with a magnum opus that will shake up death metal and propel Abyssal Ascendant to crushing, leviathan heights.

4 / 5 STARS 


1. Offering Flesh To The Stars
2. Dissolved Into The Great Hive Of Shaggai’s Progeny
3. The Dweller Awakens
4. March Of The Wind Walkers
5. Nilgh’ri Vulgt’mah Eh’yeog Uh’eog
6. Martyrs Of Mordiggian
7. Wombs Of Torment
8. The Church Of Free-Will
9. Coven Of Agony