F.P.G.S. “Am Abgrund” (2007)

This has been one of the sickest ugliest and most depressing albums I have heard in the last few years. Whether it’s the concept, the execution or some combination thereof, I don’t know. All I know is that upon listening to it, one gets slowly but surely submerged in the dark waters of despair, alienation and self-loathing. And yet it is nothing like the two recent genres trying hard for said emotions : funeral doom and suicidal depressing black metal.

This avoids the hissy / necro (read crap) production as well as the plodding nature of the above bands. Instead, it goes for a thick and clear production that makes each nuance discernable yet harkens to the sound of more experimental death metal bands form the early 90’s. The tempo shifts are many, as are the structural shifts in the four ‘songs’ on display here.

The concept involves the rather sad and pitiful life of a mentally unstable (and eventually suicidal) individual, who is besotted with psychological problems from an early age. As his experience with his environment grows, he is further plunged into neurosis and eventual suicide. The four “songs” essentially are chapters in a psychological case study.

Coming back to the music, we have some unique Black / Death metal with doom influences. I could find a reference point for the band’s strange an disturbing sound. It has slow, dirgey sections, blast beats, weird interludes and hypnotic repetitive riffing as well as near technical atonal licks and riffs. Maybe, there are synths (its hard to tell when your drowning in filth). The vocals are a reverbed growl straight from the 90’s DM underground, pierced with black metal shrieks. Though the first couple of listens find it hard to grasp at any hooks and song identifiers amongst the tracks, but repeated listens do reward with familiarity.

It is the atmosphere (oh what atmosphere )that makes this special. It makes the listener feel unclean and mentally unhealthy which is no mean feat if said listener is a metalhead. It suffocates one’s positive emotions without resorting to cheap metal gimmicks. It crushes with negativity. There is almost the feeling that one gets when watching badly depressing /downward spiral movies like Bad Lieutenant or even Falling Down. You feel like a voyeur of someone’s destruction.

All in all, a welcome and original addition to the pantheons of dark depressing metal. A new modus operandi has been created. Amen for that.

– Suleiman


Release:  2007
Label:  Self Released
Avantgenre:  Psychopathological Metal
Duration:  33:39
Origin:  Austria
Official site:  http://www.myspace.com/amabgrund
Review online since:  19.04.2008 / 06:51:57


I. Prodromalphase
II. Exazerbation
III. Schizophrenes Residuum
IV. Suizidstadien N. Pöldinger



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