Aborted’s ninth record, Retrogore, is another serving of gore splattered technical death metal. The band kicks things into high gear on the title track. It features everything we love about Aborted with its grinding drums and skull splitting riffs. The band convenes for a doomy breakdown in the middle with some slick guitar shredding before bursting into chaos as the song ends. The proggy “Cadaverous Banquet” blends technicality with deathcore riffing to strong results. Aborted has drawn controversy over the past decade for embracing deathcore on its recent albums. Still, the band does not dumb down the musicianship. Instead, it takes elements of the latter genre and splices it with the band’s signature sound. A breakdown here and there does not hurt and it only diversifies the music. The colossal introduction of “Termination Redux” serves as a warning of what is to come. The track rips and thrashes like a beast in the sea. The frenetic guitars and unpredictable drumming compels the listener from start to finish. “Divine Impediment” opens with clean guitars before descending into the seventh circle of hell. The song shifts from dissonant melodicism and straight metal. It is one of the few “accessible” tracks on the album due to the emphasis on melody over brutality.
Retrogore is not a monotonous record. Do not let the album title fool you, as Aborted has several aces up its sleeve. Aborted maintains its gore metal roots and stellar musicianship. In addition, the band does not let the deathcore overshadow the record. There are just enough breakdowns and hardcore riffing to keep things fresh. If you enjoyed 2012’s Global Flatline and 2014’s Necrotic Manifesto, then Retrogore will keep you satisfied. Let the heads bang and the blood flow.