It’s not as if we didn’t already know that the Australian project Snorlax (the solo work of Brendan Auld) was capable of making music that causes listeners stop suddenly in their racing tracks, and leaves them feeling kind of gob-smacked. Especially on the band’s debut album II, that became vividly evident. But still, the band’s new album The Necrotrophic Abyss is astonishing, and we’re lucky to get to premiere it today.
Here, the band’s evolving unification of black and death metal has reached full fruition, flowering into compositions that are bludgeoning, violent, and bewildering, elaborate in their constant permutations but both viscerally frightening and soul-crushing in their renditions of desperation and downfall — and all of it executed with jaw-dropping technical skill and captured with remarkable production quality.
On this album, to put it more succinctly, the unexpected becomes expected, and the result is a compact record that stands well out from the pack as we near the halfway point of 2023. It’s not the kind of thing you hear once and move on from. It’s the kind of thing that’s like your own personal Pandora’s box, waiting to be opened again and again, to witness with stark fascination its manifold evils fly into the world over and over.