Attan – End Of album review

Primal raging Norse marauders Attan set the hardcore template ablaze with End Of

Attan – End Of artwork

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Attan – End Of

Attan – End Of

1. The Burning Bush Will Not Be Televised
2. Feed The Primates
3. On Hands And Knees
4. In Our Image
5. SoMe Riefenstahl
6. Black Liquid Marrow
7. Catalyst Divine
8. Ghostwriters
9. End Of

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There must be something in the ice in Norway because the country has been exporting some seriously destructive, heavy music as of late, and Attan are just the latest to emerge with a sound so grim and merciless everything it touches turns to tar. 

What starts ostensibly as a hardcore record evolves and mutates into an unrecognisable beast by its climax, having dragged you further into the dark, tormented recesses of Attan’s collective conscious. 

Never allowing you breathe, the opening four songs are less than three minutes long each, rocketing through in a chaotic, breathtaking flurry and removing any sense of comfort. But it’s when they deviate from this formula that the Norsemen show their true colours, worshipping at the altar of post-metal overlords Gojira, permeating everything with crushing heaviness. 

Hypnotic guitars and rumbling bass form the backbone for Attan’s brand of nihilism and despair, and the seismic riffs on Black Liquid Marrow will send your whole upper body into an involuntary rocking motion, with the guttural, crooning bellows sounding like a giant singing on its way to work in the morning. 

The dual vocal attack of Remi Semshaug Langseth and Fritz Pettersen is what makes Attan stand out amongst other ‘blackened hardcore’ bands right now, able to add another deeper, scarier dimension to their emotional onslaught. From In Our Image to Ghostwriters, there’s an untamed, primal aggression, harking back to sulphurous basements of the 90s, but weighed down by a love of sludge.

The title track is where Attan truly embrace what they truly are. It’s raw honesty, an admission of weakness, a dark and personal ode to all that is heavy, and we’re just observers, drowning in an abyss of transcendent riffs and Thor-like vocals. If Mastodon hated the world and forgot that prog existed, this is what it would sound like. 

Luke Morton joined Metal Hammer as Online Editor in 2014, having previously worked as News Editor at popular (but now sadly defunct) alternative lifestyle magazine, Front. As well as helming the Metal Hammer website for the four years that followed, Luke also helped relaunch the Metal Hammer podcast in early 2018, producing, scripting and presenting the relaunched show during its early days. He also wrote regular features for the magazine, including a 2018 cover feature for his very favourite band in the world, Slipknot, discussing their turbulent 2008 album, All Hope Is Gone.