Ayat: Six Years of Dormant Hatred

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Ayat: Six Years of Dormant Hatred
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Ayat: Six Years of Dormant Hatred
Black Metal
Moribund Records
November 4th, 2008
Release length: 58:17
Ayat is a Black Metal band that hails from Beirut, Lebanon. Formed back in 2000, the group has issued plenty of demos, as well as two demos, one being issued through an actual label, but the material on it was a previously recorded demo to begin with. Six Years of Dormant Hatred is the first album to be issued under a label, Moribund Records, to feature newly recorded material from the band, and it’s simply filthy. The album isn’t exactly what some fans of the style will be expecting, but it’s raw and over-the-top hatred makes for an extreme release that cannot be denied as something intriguing, even if it’s not exactly what you wanted to hear in the first place. Of course, this pretty much only speaks for the first half of the release.

Right away, it become apparent that this anti-religion and anti-human act soaks their hatred in a fine Industrial compound, without ever genuinely breaking into the Industrial would. The reason it sounds this way is due to the more mechanical sounding drums and distortion on the guitars that make them sound a little more mechanical and Electronic then a tradition distortion on an electric guitar. Also, right from the start, you could hear plenty of ques from acts such as Ministry and The Electric Hellfire Club being taken into account with the furious, fast paced guitars and overall sound of the recording. Tack on the hatred that the band includes in their lyrics, which sometimes can feel a little over the top, or just completely awkward, which becomes pretty obvious in the song titles alone, such as “Puking Under Radiant Moonlight (Followed by a Century Long Ejaculation” and “Such a Beautiful Day! (The Exaltation of Saint Francis)”. Of course, this effort has a somewhat raw quality to it, which only enhances both the Industrial sounding aspects, and the overall rage that can be felt in the often dirty-sounding music.

It also doesn’t help the awkwardness that the band seems to do some of their own sound effects. In the starting track “Ilahiya Khinzir! (All Hail Allah the Swine)”, the band makes pig noises in the song, as well as some forced high pitched nasally screams that feel out of place. Then you have “Fornication and Murder”, which also features some clean singing briefly, done in the form of chanting, and vocals that are supposed to represent a woman. This track seems to drag on after a while, however, due largely in part of the long break in the middle of the song, which adds to the song’s over eleven and a half minute run time, which has a good chunk of silence before a woman starts speaking, and then a very odd sounding “la la” that sounds like one of the vocalists being distorted heavily, then some really psychotic vocals that delve into gutteral. This same situation occurs on “Puking Under Radiant Moonlight (Followed by a Century Long Ejaculation)”, but instead is just a woman singing some kind of regional folk song herself for a little while, and the atmosphere gives off a vibe of waiting at a train station, before hammering back into the music that has guitar riffs and drumming that just sounds repetitive while an audio clip plays behind it. There are also moments on “Ilahiya Kninzir! (All Hail Allah the Swine)” and “The Fine Art of Arrogance Part One (The Icon and the Cattle)”, among other tracks, where the vocals are performed in a high pitched voice, and done really fast, that only bring up shades of “I Dream of Demons” by The Electric Hellfire Club, and perhaps it is this band’s interpretation of demons moreso then anything else. There’s also wailing like ghosts during the track “Misogyny When We Embrace”, which sounds like something out of a Scooby-Doo cartoon more then a Black Metal release.

If this sounds a little out of place, or like something you might not enjoy, there’s nothing to really worry about. While the repetition and drawn out music of the longer tracks on this release are definately a turn off, the rest of the album is just intense from start to finish. There’s nothing at all wrong with this release, and it acts as a breath of fresh air due to it’s higher production quality that still retains a raw muddiness to it, and the general Industrial-inspired sound of the recording to further push the band’s enraged lyrical agenda. The only real problem is the length of the release. While Six Years of Dormant Hatred is far from a bad album, the further in you get, the more the songs start to sound the same, not necessarily in a repetition sense, but in a sense that the band doesn’t necessarily have that much to offer after a while. “Misogyny When We Embrace” carries the same kind of feel to “The Fine Art of Arrogance Part One (The Icon and the Cattle)”, and there’s really nothing special about this song to offer enough variety in the music. There’s also some comparable guitars between “Necronarcos (Tame You Death) and “Ilahiya Khinzir! (All Hail Allah the Swine)” in the sense that the first of those two is essentially just a slower sounding version of the latter. The only two tracks that show up later in the release that offer any real variety are “Thousands of Pissed Motherfuckers…”, which is just done a little tamer and meant to carry a general angst to the song, as well as “Such a Beautiful Day! (The Exaltation of Saint Francis)” due to it’s slower, Doom progressions and clean vocals.

In the long run, if you’re into more Industrial music then anything, then chances are good you’ll get more out of this recording then other Black Metal fans. The overall approach taken by the band is a nice approach, and really makes for some impressive Black Metal that captures the hatred that this style can sometime embrace perfectly. But, there’s still some issues on Six Years of Dormant Hatred that are undeniable, such as the awkward filler moments on some of the longer tracks, as well as the album not having enough variety to it, and just being too long due to that lack of variety. The general attitude is a nice mixture between the seething rage of Black Metal, as well as the energetic performance related to Industrial, and in that aspect the band has it right, and often goes off into silly concepts such a fast, high pitched vocals that sound sped up and inhuman, to pig snorts, but in the end these work to set a nice atmosphere to many of the songs. That is, until they start to feel redundant and overused through the recording. Ayat shows plenty of potential with this debut full-length offering, but also that there’s still some room for improvement.

01. Ilahiya Khinzir! (All Hail Allah the Swine) – 4:28
02. Fornication and Murder – 11:30
03. The Fine Art of Arrogance Part One (The Icon and the Cattle) – 4:47
04. Collective Suicide in the Boudoir (Feeling Wonderful Tonight) – 2:11
05. Puking Under Radiant Moonlight (Followed by a Century Long Ejaculation) – 10:14
06. Misogyny When We Embrace – 5:25
07. Necronarcos (Tame You Death) – 3:04
08. Curses! Curses! and Never Sleep… – 6:04
09. Thousands of Pissed Motherfuckers… – 7:04
10. Such a Beautiful Day! (The Exaltation of Saint Francis) – 4:20
Overall Score: 7/10

Digital review copy of this release provided by Moribund Records.