Unleashing the beasts of the deep, Imperial Triumphant can only be described as chaos incarnate. Having spent the past 10 years lurking in the underground of the New York black metal scene, their sophomore full-length album Abyssal Gods rises through extreme label Code666.
Despite their recent venture out of being independent and onto signed album releases, a move only trialled with two EPs previously, there has been no compromise from older releases. This is still the ugly, hateful mass spitting repulsive murky riffs over packed drum lines in a hateful pulsating mass of sound. With no attempt to ease the listener into the album, opening track ‘From the Palaces of the Hive’ launches straight into double pounding drum lines and swirling guitars.
The key to their sound is contrast. Relentless tracks like ‘Opposing Holiness’ sits beside ‘Black Psychadelia’ that moves with a solid mid-paced groove. The album careers through 42 minutes of this insanity, still managing to constantly surprise as they break off into sections of brass or interlude with choir voices. The drums do fall into the trap of sounding over-produced at points on the album, perhaps a symptom of the double drum, but it’s easily forgiven when faced with the full gut-wrenching carnage that Abyssal Gods produces.
Such a dense, claustrophobic sound isn’t for the casual browser. While the album is not completely inaccessible, Imperial Triumphant have made an effort to make it as close as possible. Solid riffing and inhospitable noise struggle for dominance throughout making this an occasionally jolting and disjointed album but for the persistent listener, it has a lot to offer.