Ahab - The Coral Tombs (2023)


As the perfect companion for a gloomy and cold winter day, today we have Germany’s Ahab returning after eight years since their last full-length release with the crushing “The Coral Tombs”. As the pioneers of ‘Nautik Doom’, this band makes misery inducing music that only a handful of bands can rival (Skepticism, Shape of Despair, etc.). Featuring seven tracks and nearly 67 minutes of soul-crushing music, this is one of the finest Doom releases we have ever heard.

The release opens with the oppressive “Prof. Arronax' Descent into the Vast Oceans”, with a very aggressive opening that slowly transitions into clean vocals and total bleakness. We particularly like how the band blends in Epic Doom (or traditional Doom) elements with heavier and more punishing Death/Funeral Doom parts. The track “Colossus of the Liquid Graves” nicely creates a somewhat funky atmosphere that is brilliantly flanked by deep growls, oppressive riffs, alongside crafty tempo changes.

Increasingly atmospheric, “Mobilis in Mobili”, “A Coral Tomb”, and “The Sea as a Desert” brilliantly create very thick and hopeless moods. We particularly enjoy the blend of vocal styles and crafty use of minimalistic interludes, just before some more punishing waves of demoralizing guitars. Our favorite track has to be “Ægri Somnia” and its painfully slow progression and weeping lead guitars alongside heartbreaking vocal melodies.

Closing with “The Mælstrom” featuring Greg Chandler of Esoteric, the band completes their masterpiece of bleakness. As a whole, “The Coral Tombs” is a release filled with desolation and despair, perfectly engineered with tons of crushing riffs, monumental vocal arrangements, and an overall highly demoralizing vibe. If you are a fan of the genre and have never heard of Ahab, waste no time and set forth on a magical, and highly depressing, journey with their music.

Band: Ahab Album: The Coral Tombs

Label: Napalm Records

Release: January 13th, 2023

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Genre: Doom/Funeral Doom Metal

Country: Germany

Rating: 92/100

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