ALBUM REVIEW: The Absence – The Absence

Every so often, I get a message from the captain here at Ghost Cult to potentially squeeze in a review. Let’s just say, this was an easy “sure thing” when I saw it was the new, self-titled album by The Absence (Listenable Insanity Records).  While it has been a while since I last listened to these Floridian thrash-meets-melodic-death-metalers, the lineup has seen some big changes outside of vocalist Jamie Stewart and returning drummer Jeramie Kling. The good news: we all get another thirty-seven minutes worth of killer, groovy, riff-tastic, death metal!

After a few smacks of the snare drum, The Absence kicks off the album with the pace-setting “Communion Carbonized”. The thrash riffs and speedy drumming take over the verse sections while the chorus gets a catchy guitar hook that can only be described as “Gothenburg-like” that pulls you in each time. The bridge is a nice little breakdown while still staying groovy and not pushing into a hardcore setting.

Another thrash forward with great chorus riffage is “Vagrant Death”. This song feels like it could have been part of one of the first two albums in The Absence’s catalog. In a live setting, this one will be the cause of numerous, wide-circle pits. The bridge has a slow build up to an eventual guitar solo that will get some faces to melt off.

“Fleshwaker” starts off with an acoustic section before blasting back into thrash drumming with melodic death guitar leads over the top to lead into the verse. More fancy fretwork on guitars comes halfway through as the bridge hits. This builds up to another guitar solo, of which it too slowly builds up in technicality before returning back to the verse riffs.

It is good to see The Absence back at it and dropping new music with that signature blend of thrash and that good ol’ Swedish Death Metal. This self-titled album (not to be confused with their self-titled EP from years ago) will be a big turning point for the current trio as they look to carry forward with the next chapter of what The Absence is here to put out in the world. I, for one, am excited to still get music from them and at this caliber and you should be too.


Buy the album here:

7 / 10