Mordant Rapture – The Abnegation

Rating: 3.5/5
Distributor/label: The Artisan Era
Released: 2018
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Band line-up:

Vocals – Rodrigo Rodríguez
Guitar – Ben Wilkinson
Guitar – Kent Congdon
Drums – Josh Miller


1. Unsightly Beast
2. Withered
3. A Plea Above Ashes
4. Quell The Voiceless
5. Natal Trophies


Having been going some five years, this is the first EP release from California based, death metal outfit Mordant Rapture. Apparently, it’s taken “countless gallons of coffee, sleep deprivation, and doubts” to get the sound they were after, and I can sympathise.

It’ something of a concept album. They describe it thus:

“Conceptually this EP tells the story of an expecting couple that–knowing nothing beyond their sheltered and mundane lives–become indoctrinated into a religious sect in which they do not want their offspring to be a part of. Ultimately the congregation becomes aware of their abnegation and must suffer punishment as the sect’s holy law decrees.”

Which is as good a basis as any for an EP, I suppose. The five tracks are definitely death, but heavily blackened. They list Emperor amongst their influences, and I think that really comes through. Starting off with a delicate piano intro, the atmosphere builds with some classical sounding influences.

Vocally Rodrigo Rodriguez has a certain amount of variation, which I like. There are highly intricate and well-delivered solos, complex rhythms – all of which you’d expect, and I really enjoy the symphonic black influences. I think ‘Quell the Voiceless’ is probably my favourite track, although they are all really good.

This is a great first release and one in which the blood, sweat and tears have paid off. It will appeal to any fan of black or death metal, I think. It’s intellectual and technical without being wanky and delivers more on each listen. Check them out.

Review by Bob Davidson