Absolution – Confessions of the Iniquitous (CDN Records)Tuesday, 25th September 2018
Yet another one of those ‘buried in time’ type of bands that are coming out of the woodwork, Absolution originally came to be back in 1992 in Birmingham, England. No doubt inspired by the then-burgeoning scene around them (the act was created by ex-Benediction bassist Paul Adams), they released a demo and faded out of time around 1994. But death metal doesn’t stay dead, and the band rose up in 2012 to start anew. Confessions of the Iniquitous is their first full-length effort.
Based on the context above, as well as the old school-esque artwork/logo, it doesn’t take too long to see what Absolution are up to. This is music that stems directly from that age of time, with a number of bands certainly stamped all over the sides (Benediction and Bolt Thrower quickly come to mind). But for what it is, there’s no reason to look down on it either. It’s quite catchy due to the usage of grooves a-plenty in the formula. “Shallow Graves” and “Infantile Starvation” thrive off of these slick mid-tempo riffs, and as a listener, it’s hard to get them out of your head. Truthfully, most of the songs rely on this speed to do most of their dirty work, with some occasional upticks (“Flames of Fury” and “The Flesh and the Fiends”) working their way in to keep the disc from becoming too one-dimensional. The production rounds things out with a suitable layer of heft, while still keeping things quite audible and reminiscent of the ‘90s.
Sure, it’s more retro-themed death metal, but there’s no denying the power of the riff on Confessions of the Iniquitous. It’s energetic, fun, and razor-sharp. Really, that’s all you can ask for.