Nov 062014


It’s the time of year when people who make year-end lists start the tortuous mental process of sifting and ranking what they’ve heard. We’ll be doing that soon, but we’re also looking further down the road in anticipation of what 2015 will bring. And one record it will bring that’s already on our list of highly anticipated new releases is the next album by Abigail Williams.

Today we’re fortunate to bring you a couple of teasers for what the album holds in store, as well as some words from vocalist/guitarist Ken Sorceron about the new album.

What you’re about to hear are two early versions of songs that will appear on the band’s fourth album coming next year via Candlelight Records, the successor to 2012’s excellent Becoming: “Forever Kingdom of Dirt” and “Will, Wish and Desire”. The very talented line-up for these recordings is as follows — with one special guest:

Ken Sorceron — vocals, guitar
Ian Jekelis — guitar
Jeff Wilson (Wolvhammer, ex-Nachtmystium) — guitar
Charlie Fell (Lord Mantis, ex-Nachtmystium, Von) — drums
Will Lindsay (Indian, ex-Wolves in the Throne Room) — bass

Neill Jameson (Krieg, Twilight) — guest vocals and lyrics on “Forever Kingdom of Dirt”

The two songs were produced by Sorceron, recorded mainly in the band’s practice space in Chicago and mixed where he now lives in L.A. Before they are finalized for the album, there will be different mixes and masters, and possibly some re-tracking, but as things now stand the songs are already fantastic.

“Forever Kingdom of Dirt” is rough, raw, and grim, much of it sounding like a hopeless night at an overworked trauma unit, with more broken bodies than there are hands to save them. It begins with a fusillade of blasting and then pulls back into a bleak, slow-rolling rhythm with an otherworldly ambiance. These divergent states trade places, the assault and the fallout, until the mid-point — when the song begins to transform after a harrowing shriek.

And what follows, like a beating heart at the bitter black core of the song, is an absolutely killer melodic hook, a rocking riff accompanied by a rumbling drum beat that’s going to infiltrate the memory of anyone who hears it. You should also prepare yourself to be scalded by a vocal acid bath — as usual, N. Imperial holds nothing back

The shimmering guitar solo at the beginning of “Will, Wish and Desire” digs the hooks in even earlier than the preceding song, and the pulsating vitality of the music never lets up. Anchored by a compulsive rock beat and bursts of double-bass, the song drives with infectious energy, with flashing guitars and sweeping melody.

It’s a layered, multi-textured, addictive piece of music, and at least to these ears there’s an uplifting, open-armed, soul-baring quality to the song, and its emotional intensity is magnified by Sorceron’s absolutely searing vocals.

Abigail Williams have never stayed rooted in one place for very long, and these songs are a sign that their musical evolution continues.  If the rest of the album is on par with these two tracks, it’s going to be a highlight of 2015.


I asked Sorceron for any thoughts he wanted to share with us about the songs or the album, and here is his response:

“In early 2014 we started touring again and resumed the writing and recording of a new album in Chicago at our practice spot. Though we had started work on this album in late 2012, 2013 was spent working on the Lord Mantis album and dealing with various degrees of grease in our personal lives. After we got the bulk of the production down in Chicago, I ended up moving to Los Angeles to try and straighten out my life while periodically resuming production, and this is the result of our work.

“We wanted to release a couple songs this year while they are still at least somewhat fresh to us since we have no idea when the actual album will come out for various reasons, but we hope that it will be spring of 2015. Life keeps getting in the way of completion, but that’s to be expected when you have burned as hard as most of us have over the years working on music and ignoring the rest of your life; it eventually catches up with you.

“Musically this album is very diverse, and the overall vibe is way more negative compared to our last album, Becoming. Artistically, this is the best lineup I’ve had the pleasure to work with over the years. You can hopefully expect an announcement about artwork and an album title before the end of the year — the art is being handled by Stevie Floyd (Taurus, Dark Castle) — but for now enjoy these two songs.”





  1. 365chaosriddendays says:

    The songs are memorable, the desperate and grim melody makes all very intense, I hope for the release on the early months of the new upcoming year!

  2. TRex says:

    Becoming was my favorite album of 2012, and these tracks indicate that I will probably love the album of which they will become elements. I think they played draft versions of these songs when they performed in Kansas City last May. They played something new at least that sounded good to me, and about which Sorceron said were just beginning versions of songs. Stevie Floyd’s art is terrific, so that is a nice benefit too. I am really happy that these guys reversed the decision to put Abigail Williams in mothballs. (That last part sounds kind of weird – I’m leaving it. “What did you do with Grandma Abigail?” “I put her in mothballs. Might need her for a smoothie later.”)

    Side-note: from now on when people ask me how I am doing I will respond that I am dealing with various degrees of grease in my personal life.

    • Islander says:

      Or just say, “I’ve been greased”. And don’t forget to add kale to your grandma smoothie, but freeze the kale first to enhance the flavor.

    • Islander says:

      And on a more serious note, I was also a huge fan of Becoming, but I think these two songs are among the best AW have ever done. I find myself being drawn back to them over and over — they’ve both got real staying power.

  3. […] band has a cadre of avid supporters — including the very trustworthy No Clean Singing, who today premieres two brand new Abigail Williams tracks — so I feel obligated to at least give them a shot each time they release something […]

  4. […] like the band is back and in full swing. The band has premiered not one, but two new tracks (via NoCleanSinging) and they are both pretty rad. This is a much rawer sound than previous Abigail Williams material […]

  5. pete says:

    Anyone else thinks that beginning and some more of “Will, Wish and Desire” sounds like Eulogy IV by Nachmystium? Not a bad thing tho, considering their current lineup.
    Nonetheless, I love all their stuff, especially Becoming. Can’t wait for the release.

  6. derek says:

    that’s a great lineup, the new songs sound killer : )

  7. […] songs, titled “Forever Kingdom Of Dirt” and “Will, Wish And Desire,” via No Clean Singing. These are early versions of songs, which will appear on the band’s new album, which will be […]

  8. […] black metal outfit Abigail Williams have released early versions of two new tracks over at No Clean Singing. The songs, titled “Forever Kingdom Of Dirt” and “Will, Wish And Desire”, […]

  9. […] Abigail Williams are shifting styles across the black metal spectrum almost as fast as they swap out members, and it’s typically always for the better. The band blossomed into atmospheric black metal in the realm of Wolves in the Throne Room for 2012’s Becoming, which was one of my personal favorites from that year. Now the band are on the move once again with a new lineup and a new sonic direction, and while they’re putting finishing touches on the highly anticipated record, they’ve decided to tie fans over with early versions of two brand new songs that are now streaming with our friends at No Clean Singing. […]

  10. Bobby Holmes says:

    I guess since nachtmystium is no more, they thought “hey we can just blatantly rip off Nachtmystium so people will pay more attention to us”…..bogus

    • Chicago Sound Engineer says:

      More like the guys that wrote the songs for Nachtmystium might get some credit for them this time.

      • Islander says:

        ^^^ This. And there are so many other reasons why that comment is off-base that I don’t know where to start. So I won’t. Probably wouldn’t do a lick of good anyway.

      • Chris says:

        I wrote the exact same response on Charlie’s facebook page. It amazes me how many people don’t understand these guys were the song writers for Nachtmystium (among others).

    • Dave says:

      This isn’t MetalSucks, keep the dumb comments for that website.

  11. Ian says:

    I always thought AW was a decent band. I am loving the Nachtmystium influence. I think its not fair to call it a ripoff since they have two former members. In fact these two tracks are better than a lot of the stuff that was on the last NM album (which I still liked).

  12. Ralphie says:

    Why do people even care about this band? They have never done anything original and if anything they’re are a run of the mill have your parents pay to get you popular band, which is probably 100 percent true. Basically your typical steal music from the unheard artists from the underground and make your fans believe you are the most original artist ever.

    • Andy Synn says:

      Wow… that’s pretty much all completely wrong. Well played.

      • Ralphie2 says:

        Really? Can’t wait for this zine and others to cover some random band from say Chile with no industry connections shitty recordings yet an original sound. That will never happen. Why is that?

  13. Drolok says:

    I can’t believe people hate this band so much. I am a fan of many styles of metal, especially metal with a “blackish” feel. Every album that this band has done has been amazing. The fact that Ken switches styles every album is even more impressive, at this point they have taken various forms of black metal and nailed then all too perfection. The problem is the death core kids hate AW now due to the change to a raw black metal style, and the die hard black metal base hates them because they started as a more metal core type of band. Too many idiots!! Every AW album has been amazing. All you haters just go back to your dark throne

  14. […] this band but it features now ex members of Nachtmystium and Indian. Two new songs were put online earlier this year including one featuring Neill Jameson from […]

  15. […] of the above details last November after a conversation with Sorceron, and at that time we also premiered early versions of two songs that will appear on the album — both of which were fantastic. […]

  16. […] I first heard this song way before the album in which it appears was released — and way before any official premiere of any finished song on the album. Abigail Williams’ principal creative force Ken Sorceron shared it with me, and I shared it with you here. […]

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