VIANDE "L'abime devore les Ames"

By Dr. Abner Mality

True horror is a hard thing to encapsulate in music. Death and black metal and even industrial music can transmit brutality and darkness, but the sort of crawling uneasiness of true musical horror is much harder to express. BLUT AUS NORD and DEATHSPELL OMEGA are two bands that have done it. Well, with VIANDE, we have another band with a relentlessly sinister and almost nauseating sound. It cannot be a coincidence that all these bands are French.

This is not headbanging music. You won't be grooving or raising the horns to this. IMMOLATION is a band known for doing a very dark form of death metal, but their latest effort is AOR melodic rock next to VIANDE. I struggled to get through this one. It's a horrific onslaught of cavernous cacophony laced with agonized grumbling and some bleak industrial touches. Of course, lyrics are French, but that's unimportant, as the bestiality here transcends any translation. To talk of individual tracks is fruitless. There is no real "memorability" to the songs and each of the 8 tracks is a suffocating morass of lightless extremity.

The one thing VIANDE does here is create that feeling of HORROR. That's what they're after and looked at on that level, "L'abime devore les Ames" is unqualified success. But I will not be returning here. The world is fucked up and depressing as it is. This is metal for masochists.