The Black Dahlia Murder – Abysmal


Truckloads of heavy, fast, energetic brutish anthems…

Review by Dan Perks

Metal Blade Records

Release date: 18 September 2015

With an album entitled Abysmal, The Black Dahlia Murder have posed an interesting question. Are they trying to warn us of the albums quality or is this title relating to something else entirely? I’ll start by saying this is instantly recognisable as a TBDM album. Following on from the 2013 release Everblack, Abysmal continues the distinctive TBDM sound: galloping kick drums seamlessly transition into high speed blast beats; the guitars move from catchy hooks into tremolo grooves and back again with effortless efficiency; the final touches of the TBDM sound come from the frantic bass rhythms and mixed vocals of Trevor Strnad. Merging elements of black and death metal together and adding a pinch of deathcore chugs and breakdowns, TBDM have found a formula and they are sticking to it.

So, it’s the same old thing again? Well, yes. But don’t let that put you off, there is a reason that TBDM have stuck with this formula: it works. Abysmal continues with the key elements that make a TBDM so awesome. The slight orchestral touches complement the heavier sections, the superior grooves perfectly go hand in hand with the melodies and guitar solos. So if it’s not broken don’t fix it. And there is nothing that needs fixing about the TBDM sound. It’s been refined and crafted perfectly over the years. Because of this brilliantly refined sound, every track on Abysmal is an absolute monster. From ‘Vlad, Son Of The Dragon’ to ‘The Fog’ and through to ‘That Cannot Die, Which Eternally Is Dead’, there are truckloads of heavy, fast, energetic brutish anthems.

If you are already a fan of The Black Dahlia Murder then Abysmal will not disappoint you in the slightest. And if you’re not a current fan then go out on the day of release and buy this album. Then buy all of the back catalogue and find out what you have been missing.

The Black Dahlia Murder – Abysmal20158 out of 10

Track listing:

  1. Receipt
  2. Vlad, Son Of The Dragon
  3. Abysmal
  4. Re-Faced
  5. Threat Level No. 3
  6. The Fog
  7. Stygiophobic
  8. Asylum
  9. The Advent
  10. That Cannot Die Which Eternally is Dead