Aborted - Strychnine.213
Century Media
Brutal Death Metal
10 songs (37:13)
Release year: 2008
Aborted, Century Media
Reviewed by Goat

Although they started out as pure Goregrind, Belgian Grunt n’Blast squad Aborted have come under fire from fans in recent years for taking a more melodic approach to their art. Both 2005’s The Archaic Abattoir and 2007’s Slaughter & Apparatus added elements of everything from Melodic Death Metal to plain ol’ Metalcore whilst keeping a foundation of Brutal Death Metal, and reactions to those albums have been mixed. The decision to release album number six just a year after the previous full-length was equally as controversial if not moreso, and many fans have declared the band dead as a result of Strychnine.213; rather unfairly, in my opinion. Just because Aborted are popular doesn’t make them bad – fine, they’re not the best Brutal Death Metal band in town, but they’re hardly the worst.

Strychine.213 mostly continues in the path laid down by its two predecessors: speedy riff-ridden slices of Death/Grind with the odd melodic part – but thankfully no clean singing. The biggest disappointment with Strychnine.213 – as with the two previous albums from Aborted – is that the band haven’t gone far enough with the melodic elements, leaving them in some sort of limbo where they’re not brutal enough for one crowd nor melodic/progressive enough for another. After an impressively atmospheric introduction in the form of Carrion, the band slip down a few notches with first track proper Ophiolatry On A Hemocite Platter – as with the majority of the songs here, being closer to Brutal Death than not, and not having nearly enough catchy parts to be memorable. The performances are all excellent, of course, guitar riffs cranked out with skill, drum blasts coming at you from all directions, vocalist Sven and guitarist Sebastien sharing an impressively deep growl and yowling scream.

What we do get are songs that feel written specifically to have catchy melodic parts, most of which don’t work as intended – on the aforementioned Ophiolatry On A Hemocite Platter, the Death Metal riffing is more interesting than the effects cobbled on at the end. You’ll never actually be bored, but odds are that you’ll have heard this all before, and so how much time the new Aborted spends in your playlist is ultimately rather limited. There’s only so many times you can listen to all of I35 just for the cool solo, or the whole of Avarice Of Vilification for that suspiciously System Of A Down-y riff (seriously, listen to Prison Song again and tell me you’re not reminded of it…). There are a few that beat repeat listens: Pestiferous Subterfuge will keep you grooving, as will The Chyme Congeries, but apart from that little island in the middle of the album, the rest is sadly dull.

Of course, odds are that people who buy this will do it as much for the impressively sick artwork (even covered in blood and tangled in barbed wire, the female breast is obviously still great at catching the eye!) as the music. If you’re the sort that likes that kind of thing, then feel free to purchase Strychnine.213, but those more experienced with Death Metal would do better to look elsewhere for their brutality fix.

Killing Songs :
Carrion, Pestiferous Subterfuge, The Chyme Congeries
Goat quoted 67 / 100
Other albums by Aborted that we have reviewed:
Aborted - ManiaCult reviewed by Goat and quoted 74 / 100
Aborted - Global Flatline reviewed by Khelek and quoted 70 / 100
Aborted - Coronary Reconstruction EP reviewed by Goat and quoted no quote
Aborted - Goremageddon: The Saw And The Carnage Done reviewed by Crims and quoted 84 / 100
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