The very existence of death metal implies true, unparalleled, and utterly foreboding power of ungodly proportions. Yet, whenever there’s an extreme already in place there are always going to be those who seek to push it even further. A vast swathe of the underground is perpetually in that cycle, always trying to out-do those who come before in some form or another. A lot of times, it all comes together for a truly barbaric performance that holds nothing back with naught but raw fury and unbridled power to be found within. Less often, however, we get to see a band that still goes all in for their performance, absolutely, but there’s a special dark magic about everything else that makes the record in question take on a life entirely of its own with the work as a whole becoming a true sight to behold in virtually every way. With their first full-length album, Viande has somehow found themselves qualified as just such a spectacle.
Right away, there’s something particularly cathartic about this band’s performance. It’s the sort of thing that’s hard to pin down in terms outside of that since Viande’s particular brand of death metal here is a true underground marvel that is constantly massive in its presence with an undeniable quality permeating virtually every facet of the eight tracks that are to be uncovered within “L’abime Dévore les Âmes” to the point that I already feel comfortable in assuming that the French underground will have to really impress and surprise in order to surpass this creation. All the way to the very end, Viande crafted an utterly cavernous performance whose power is wildly intimidating right out of the gate with every ounce of the record going right for your throat for a quick but horrifically visceral execution only to instantly move on to the next victim, leaving a pervasive fresh trail of corpses in its wake. To fall into “L’abime Dévore les Âmes” is to let the album swallow you wholly without question, and once you do you’ll be met with such power that is just as terrifying as it is stupendous in every form with the riffs all but bone-crushing, the atmospheres soul-devouring, the power to melt flesh right off the bone, quality that’s simply jaw-dropping, and a dark cohesiveness that’s as dense as the deepest darkness of the bottommost reaches of a cave that will never know the cursed light of the sun. Once this monstrous album finishes and you crawl back out into the wretched day, it won’t take much for the call and voracious comfort of “L’abime Dévore les Âmes” to call you back into its blood-drenched cradle, just where it wants you so it can further weave its sinister machinations into your mind with this cerebral performance one of primal roots and executed with a nasty, rust-riddled serrated edge that’s as deadly as it is effective.
In no small terms, Viande doesn’t leave any listener unaffected should they be fortunate enough to escape this glorious torture alive yet its dark seduction is all but immense, and it won’t be long before you revisit the harrowing depths. I can already see the very darkness of “L’abime Dévore les Âmes” finding a special place in my listening habits for some time to come, and should this effort not be heralded as the vicious abomination of life in all of its glory then I will be severely disappointed in the underground scene at large. For what do we seek if not depravity like this?
“L’abime Dévore les Âmes” releases on April 15th via Transcending Obscurity Records!
LISTEN to advanced tracks from “L’abime Dévore les Âmes” on Bandcamp here.
LIKE Viande on Facebook here.