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Fairytale Abuse - "Perversions Of Angel VI" (CD)

Fairytale Abuse - "Perversions Of Angel VI" CD cover image

"Perversions Of Angel VI" track listing:

1. When One Bleeds (4:11)
2. The Interdiction of Obscurity (4:20)
3. Fall of the Icon (4:55)
4. Vivid the Blood Ill-Natured (5:27)
5. A Phenomenons Rage - The Burden (4:19)
6. Troparion for the White Plague (5:34)
7. Lust Murder Theater (4:43)
8. At The Gate of Thorns (5:17)
9. Curse of the Black Opus (1:55)
10. Powers and Signs of Lying Wonders (5:17)
11. Our Glorious Revivification (6:55)

Reviewed by on January 30, 2009

"“Perversions of Angel VI” is in turns grandiosely epic and quietly atmospheric and switches off from being driven by guitar and keyboard. "

Symphonic black metal is a rather crowded genre, with dozens of lesser known bands being lorded over by the giants like Old Man’s Child, Dimmu Borgir, and Cradle of Filth. The sound has been pretty well covered from all angles and innovations are becoming exceedingly rare. While Fairytale Abuse doesn’t revolutionize the genre with “Perversions of Angel VI,” they do provide a satisfying romp through the darker and more melodic aspects of heavy metal that will get people contemplating their inner lusts and desire for wanton violence as they head-bang away.

It shouldn’t be any surprise considering the band’s name that each of the songs feature some sort of fairytale like aspect that gets twisted and perverted into proper metal form. The most frequent vehicle of the more upbeat elements are the keyboard segments, which often provide an epic background conducive to gallant knights heading off to save a princess in distress. With the exception of a few opening segments and one interlude track they are generally kept just a bit lower in the mix so that a listener has to slightly strain to hear their nuances. The entire album generally has a lower end production than bigger acts, but it’s got enough polish that nearly everything except for the bass can be heard at the same time.

Creating a tight combination of disparate elements is usually the biggest hurdle for symphonic metal bands to overcome, and Fairytale Abuse does it exceedingly well. The vocals, which alternate between higher black metal screams and lower death grunts, are meshed with particular style as they closely follow the guitar riffs and work off the keyboard sounds. Each scream has a pleasingly diabolic rasp and the occasional clean whispers are delivered with enough force to come off without sounding too over the top. The lyrical content also follows the beautiful but evil formula, as they are complex and poetic but also contain a spattering of gore soaked references for good measure. Although the lyrics are generally incomprehensible without looking them up, they are one of the highlights of the album as they completely avoid the traps that many other bands in the same style fall prey to. There isn’t a single word purposefully misspelled to make it sound scarier, there are absolutely no instances of cheesy play on words, and the pendulum swing between erotic and violent acts flows well and never becomes bafflingly incoherent.

“Fall of the Icon” and “At The Gates of Thorns” each have some of the best meshing of melody and distorted guitars on the album with their constant building up to heavier segments and keyboard elements that sound like they belong there. The entirely instrumental “Curse of the Black Opus” gives the requisite piano acrobatics to create the feeling of watching a macabre opera before going through a silky smooth transition into “Powers and Signs of Lying Wonders.” The switch is deftly executed by keeping the same melody going and then unexpectedly throwing in heavier guitars that follow the same pattern.

“Perversions of Angel VI” is in turns grandiosely epic and quietly atmospheric and switches off from being driven by guitar and keyboard. It is an overall very well done album, even if it doesn’t break any new ground. Symphonic black metal genre fans will be more than pleased, but probably not overwhelmed.

Highs: Good mesh of keyboard and guitar, lyrics that aren't over the top

Lows: Bass is almost inaudible, doesn't tread any new territory

Bottom line: A great example of symphonic black metal, although it doesn't add anything new to the genre

Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls
3.5 out of 5 skulls

Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)