Well, Abrahamic Liars, what a name on its own, right? Now, where to start with a black metal record as ambitious as this one. Okay, first the most important things: Abrahamic Liars is not a simple band, it is a project. The core were the three musicians who came up with the idea in early 2019 – Jos, Niels and Jolle, who wanted to start a black metal project spanning the globe. On the record they are joined by 12 (!) vocalists from four different European countries (Holland, Belgium, Portugal and Iceland!!). Live they are joined by Cin, Beuk and Tim – three well-known vocalists from the Belgium music scene, as they have already performed in such acts as Works of the Flesh, Izah, Musth, Seethr or Carnal Desecration. And, to top it all off – Genesis is the first part of a three-fold trilogy, whose parts will always have six tracks and those combined 18 songs have all been written already (!!!). The logistics behind all of this must have reached by Band Aid qualities!
Nevertheless, a full list of contributors and organizational impressiveness would not make up for a lack of content and that should also be noted: Abrahamic Liars are full of content. The band name itself is already pointing in the direction of the whole thing: Judaism, Christianity and the Islam are the three so-called “Abrahamic” religions as they all derive from the biblical person “Abraham” - so the band name refers to those three religions and declares all of them to be “Liars”, to deceive the people, to lead them astray for the purpose of ruling over them. Combine this with the record’s name Genesis (which of course is also the first book of the bible) gives you a manifold idea: It can refer to the start of the people being lied to, or to the start of this band, the start of the band showing up how hypocritical the concept of organized religion can be or to the start of the trilogy. Either way is an interesting lead, but the one which strikes the most is the one with this band starting to uncover the hypocrisy behind organized religion – this can already be seen by the title “Schijnheilig – Schijnveilig” (the Dutch word for hypocrisy) or also with track six titled “A Lesson In Paranoia” - religions must be paranoid to keep control over their followers. Mark the distinction here, I am not talking about believe and believers, but only about religion and followers, as there is a clear difference between the two. One can believe in God without feeling the necessity to run into a building every week. By the way – that building could also burn, like the image of the burning Notre Dame in the band’s logo or in “Votre Dame” (the second track) – both things allude to the Parisian church we all know which burned on the same day that Abrahamic Liars held their first rehearsal as a band; all just a coincidence or karma?
Musically, the first EP (six tracks, 24 minutes) shows how heavily influenced the band was by black metal – very much in the Bathory-sense and less in the modern post-black or blackgaze-sense. Their metal is fast, furious and only occasionally breaks ranks (and speed). Sometimes there are a few doom elements (like the slow intro to “Schijnheilig – Schijnveilig” with all of its nice guitar pickings) or a steady reference to early blackened death metal bands (listen to the thunderous growls in the final track “A Lesson in Paranoia”). The beginning with a track like “Black Metal Blues” should also be noted – a nod to early blackened punk bands like Entombed, whose “Wolverine Blues” might have inspired the title of this one.
This band doesn’t want to start a party, they want to start a fire in the minds of those who listen to their furious blend of neck-breaking guitars and drums with the kind of lyrics and ideas that you cannot simply digest, you will have to think about it.