Rainy weather and music have gone together for about a thousand years now, each inspiring visions of the other. Each genre of music has its own special relationship with rainy and cloudy weather. Black metal is no different. From all my searching through the myriad genres metal has to offer, the best music for a rainy day is depressive black metal. It’s harsh and raw, an unrefined knife, but it has deep emotional connections to those that wrote the music as well as to those that listen to the music, it is an unrefined knife that is somehow expertly wielded. Depressive black metal, more so than any other sub-genre can fall prey to really bad music though, intentionally cheap production, lazy sound editing, it can lead to some of the worst black metal you’ll hear. Depressive black metal is a slippery slope but often pays higher dividends in terms of music. Abandoned by Light, a one-man project out of Yorkshire, England, wrote a concept album in February that I believe qualifies as some good depressive black metal.
The story is set in a future world where everything has essentially gone up in smoke and ruin and decay are all that’s left of humanity’s legacy. In comes the titular angel, a sort of genetic experiment that was forsaken as mankind began dying off. The angel is left alone in a strange, alien, dead world and forced to somehow make sense of its own existence as well as learn what happened to her creatures. Ghosts, or what passes for ghosts in a world that has lost all definition, haunt the landscape and the angel’s mind and let in the inexorable loneliness and pain that comes with unbidden solitude. Lyrically speaking, the story is brilliant and fits the genre of depressive black metal very well. It’s a story that has layers and layers of emotions, sights, smells, and all manner of sensations and is presented to the listener in a way that shows all these things in a different light, much like the Creature would have experienced these things in Frankenstein.
The musical side of the story is a bit more chaotic, at times there are brilliant interludes that are abruptly interrupted with blast beats and abrasive riffs. The music itself is quite good, the man behind Abandoned by Light is clearly a man who knows how to play many instruments. That’s not something I would question. But given the frequency that material has been put out through the Abandoned by Light moniker and the relatively short time the project has been in existence, I think more care ought to be put into the arrangement of said music. It’s not bad, not at all, the music still flows but it hits a few rocky points that really jar the listener and take a little away from the story, which in a concept album is the most important aspect of the album.
Overall I would recommend this album, it’s harsh, raw, and unrefined like all good depressive black metal is. It has a fascinating story behind the music that is surprisingly deep for a genre that usually doesn’t look for deeper answers or ask thoughtful questions. Give it a try.
Listen and Support!