Hateful Abandon - Liars/Bastards [Candlelight Records - 2014]Candlelight Records presents Liars/Bastards, the third album by Bristolís Hateful Abandon. The brainchild of one Vice Martyr, Hateful Abandon has been toiling in the dark crevices of the European underground since 2004.
Itís funny, some adages are so painfully obvious that they are hardly worth the mention. However it pains me to say, with Liars/Bastards, you truly canít judge a book by itís cover. Going into this review, I had no idea what Hateful Abandon sounded like. For some reason, my gut instinct was that they were some flavor of metal. While Hateful Abandon touches on elements of metal, to my surprise, they actually sound more like the bastardized mating of Joy Division and Killing Joke. That my friends is a wonderful thing. The album transpires with a heavier and more experimental flair, than the aforementioned bands, but the influence is undeniable. That said, every single track on this album has itís own distinct approach and Vice Martyrís vocal stylings have quite a varied range.
Liars/Bastards contains 7 tracks and is in no short supply of gems. As a matter of fact I thoroughly enjoyed each piece, but there are several standouts. The albumís opening salvo, ďMaze of Bastards,Ē is built on a foundation of: eerie synthesizer sounds, clashing percussion, the repetitive clanging of a pipe, and Martyrís vocals at their most strained. ďHigh Rise,Ē relies on post punk guitar and bass stylings, and sine wave peaks and valleys. ďThe TestĒ would fit nicely on The Cureís Pornography album, and here Martyrís vocals even sound Robert Smith-esque at times. Perhaps my favorite piece on the album is ďThe Walker,Ē which is also the most Joy Division influenced piece, right down to the icy Ian Curtis vocal stylings.
All in all a strong outing from this Bristol-based chap. Every cut had itís own personality, honoring Martyrís influences, while never truly sounding like a retread. Thatís no easy task, but Hateful Abandon manages to pull it off swimmingly well. A solid album through and throughHal Harmon