Abyssal: Antikatastaseis

Enigmatic death metallers conjure a new axis of evil

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This mysterious British entity’s career has been flawless so far, managing to keep their identity secret for the past four years so people can focus purely on the music.

Even at a time when this kind of suffocatingly oppressive form of death metal inherited from Incantation seemed to be the under-ground’s style of choice, the simultaneous reissues of their first two albums two years ago still managed to make a stir.

Not only does Antikatastaseis use that style as asset, it actually expands upon it, dissecting its core elements before viciously reassembling them slightly out of their initial alignment to create an even greater sense of unease. Then there’s also the use of chilling dark ambience, now an integral facet of the band’s complex personality rather than a simple gimmick. Yet the most surprising addition is a newfound sense of melody, whose simplicity still carries an eeriness that serves to enrich the darkness from which it emerges. Antikatastaseis is a step across that threshold that separates the followers from the innovators.