Have you felt darkness? Have you been engulfed in the throes of the deepest depression, its heavy hand softly caressing your head as it holds you face down in the dirt? Have you welcomed sleep in the hopes that you might not wake, that you might escape another day anchored to a sinking ship? Have you sniffed the sulfuric fumes of Hell, tasted the burning upon your tongue while you licked the flames of madness? Then allow us to introduce you to your new personal soundtrack.
The discography of Netherlands’ gift to the underworld, Gnaw Their Tongues, has long been one filled with aural nightmares and hellish cacophony. Pioneers of the experimental/industrial black metal realm, the reputation of Gnaw Their Tongues often precedes any work long before an actual release is in hand. Frankly, that reputation is well deserved but on newest full-length, Abyss of Longing Throats, Gnaw Their Tongues are taking their mesmerizing and nihilistic brand of musical misanthropy to amazingly insane depths. This is one listening experience that will change everyone who touches it, and for some they may not make it back from the brink.
While the industrial components of this album are both ethereal and potent in their delivery and placement it’s when the music drifts into the frost bitten, Seventh Circle of black metal Hell where Gnaw Their Tongues go from being manic and sadistic to downright deadly. Take the seven plus minute title-track as Exhibit A of blasphemous black metal fury. It’s an absolute face-melting barrage of all things blast beats and tremolo picking. The fact that it’s sandwiched between two tracks of industrialized sonic terror just seems to heighten the effect. “From The Black Mouths of Spite” sounds as if it emanated from behind the locked doors of Lucifer’s personal S&M chamber. Tortured screams and rhythmic drumming are accompanied by industrialized blasts, stretching for what seems like eternity. It’s the aural equivalent of a Faces of Death movie. You really don’t want to turn away but do you really want to witness this beheading?
If you stay to feast long enough at this sinful supper a full course of hopelessness and despondency is on the menu. Heaping helpings of dejection and self-ruination are the dessert. Gnaw Their Tongues have never minced their efforts in isolating and attacking the last vestiges of human hope, but on this album the vigor in which they coat their vision of the world with as much merciless darkness is astounding, and for the faint of heart may simply be too frightening to bear. Consider yourself warned.
Abyss of the Longing Throats is out now on Crucial Blast. You can experience and purchase the full album at the Crucial Blast Bandcamp page.