Abrahma (Reflections In The Bowels Of A Bird)
Crank this to 9 of 11 - Editors Pick
Genre: Heavy Psych rock
Sounds Like: Pallbearer, Earth, Goatsnake
Abrahma are a very unique heavy psych rock band from France, and if you’re not familiar with them, this is your lucky day. Their second full length releaseReflections in the Bowels of a Birdfrom Small Stone Record label is a dynamically rich album. The styles vary tremendously ranging from majestic Pallbearer-like doom to psychedelic stoner rock and a bit of grunge-era heaviness. Abrahma have taken their influences and really created something special they can call their own. The vocals of Seb Bismith are terrific, he has a style that is totally original, we cannot find a resemblance to other vocalists to make a comparison, its part what makes them so distinctive.
Seb Bismuth: Guitars, Vocals
Nicolas Heller: Guitars
Guillaume Colin: Bass Guitars
Benjamin Colin: Drums
1. Fountains Of Vengeance – 5:29
2. An Offspring To The Wolves – 6:35
3. Omens Pt. 1 – 6:19
4. Weary Statues – 5:39
5. Omens Pt. 2 – 4:26
6. Kapal Kriya – 5:39
7. Square The Circle – 3:42
8. Omens Pt. 3 – 4:48
9. A Shepherd's Grief – 5:52
10. Conium – 4:12
The album begins with “Fountains Of Vengeance” and this one really sets the tone. The first part of the song has an underlying grunge feel mixed into the heavy stoner sound, think of a spaced-out version of Goatsnake. At the 3:20 mark, things take a turn towards a psych doom aura; it’s great contrast and really elevates the song. This leads us to one of the standout tracks, “An Offspring To The Wolves”. The desperation in the vocals of Seb is genuine, could be the vocal highlight on the album. We can’t help but think how the late Layne Staley would perform on this song, the structure is well suited for this type of desperate singing. Next up is “Omens Pt. 1,” and this one just blew us away. Terrific exploration and bass can be found here. It’s heavy, spacious, dense and melodic; what else do you need. Every once in a while a background vocalist that resembles a young Chris Cornell from Louder Than Love era shows up, it’s brief, yet has a strong impact.
Track 4 “Weary Statues” is a pounding psychedelic beast. The rhythmic change ups from heavy stoner riffs to melodic doom on this song is what makes the band so unique. It’s a prime example of how they make all their influences work together flawlessly. The bass is so deep here and throughout the album, it just sets a deep rooted foundation for the music. Now on “Omens Pt.2” the bass will really test your speakers, it’s so rich and powerful. This instrumental is out there, the first half is spacious and reflective with soft translucent vocals, than out of nowhere we run into a wall of psychedelic doom. The echoed Chris Cornell background chants show up along with a saxophone and experimental synths… sounds very complex, yet it all seems to work.
The album continues on this heavy psych pace with “Kapal Kriya”. This one seems to have a dense stoner rock vibe in vein of bands like Datura or Gas Giant. The next cut “Square The Circle” offers some faster arrangements, injecting some variety into the album. The echoed vocals are a big plus here as well. “Omens Pt.3” just spirals into a vortex of atmospheric doom, sounding extremely impressive when cranked up. The second to last song “A Shepherd's Grief” has an abundant amount of psychedelic doom richness. The vocals are distinct and powerful, it’s impressive how they stay strong over the music, It’s one of those songs that set them apart from the crowd. Ending the album is the mesmerizing “Conium”. It’s a beautifully written psychedelic piece to bring us to a close.