Rating:
9.4
Ahab - The Call Of The Wretched Sea
2006


01. Below The Sun
02. The Pacific
03. Old Thunder
04. Of The Monstrous Pictures Of Whales
05. The Sermon
06. The Hunt
07. Ahab's Oath


I bet many of you know the story of Moby Dick that traumatized Ahab and eversince Ahab swore to lead this whale to its doom for all the suffering it caused him, yet the only doom that was lurking was his own and his men that followed him in this dreadful journey in the shadows of the sea, to finally find themselves in the depths of the ocean, in oblivion. But how would it seem to you if a funeral doom metal band covered musically and lyrically this story? I believe it would seem obscure to most of you, but not until you listen to Ahab's debut album, "The Call Of The Wretched Sea". All the answers lie in there and all the signs lead to only one conclusion, this German trio knows how to create overwhelming funeral doom that will strike you down to the lowest parts of the sea.

Through the whole duration of the album you feel the waves of the raging satin sea striking with no mercy your hopeless body, the essence of the dissonant waters is always present and there's nothing you can do to avoid it, you just float in woe in the most terrifying waters until you finally drown, cause of death: asphyxiation and relentless torment. If you don't believe me all you have to do is listen to "The Call Of The Wretched Sea" and you'll find yourselves how powerful this attempt can be! Melody and terror are present from the first moment of this journey with bitter end until its last. The soul-crushing guitar riffing is always present to evoke an imposing and horrifying atmosphere with its ultra heavy distortion that seems to me at times as if it is slowly rising from the bottom of the darkest ocean, whereas the wailing and distressing guitar melodies (accompanying the riffing and strengthening its cause) or the beautiful acoustic chords (evoking the calmness of the great vast sea) float like wraiths of those perished in the waters. Some oriental melodic solos here and there (like on "Old Thunder") are a definitely good addition which actually shows that funeral doom musicians can be creative and qualified if they want to, don't let the simplicity of the music they tend to present misguide you, and in the end, Ahab is high quality funeral doom.

Some keyboard melodies and FX are distinctive here and there, but they tend to remain in the background somehow, without this being something negative, not at all, especially since they give you the impression as if they were a whale's lament echoing from beyond as the journey of Ahab and his ship martches on until they meet their doom (the threatening keyboard passage after the 7th minute of "The Hunt" is perfect!). The rhythm section is bombastic, quite fast for a funeral doom release, but maybe it's just the fact that the overall album won't rely only on low-tempo compositions and tends to sound quite upbeat at times, escalating the emotional charge of the compositions, flowing along with the ship in the pace of the wind; "The Sermon" for example is quite an upbeat and terrifying funeral doom/death metal composition that rages wild! And last but not least the vocals and the question that follows is simple: "What can i say about them?" Well, i suppose i have to say a few things about them and my opinion is the most positive of all, they are ultra deep grunts, powerful and menacing to the core, at times seeming as if they are coming from the deepest caves of the sea consealing the tranquility of the peaceful seeming waters for danger lies ahead (like on "The Pacific"). Some very few choir oriented vocals here and there are always welcome and they consist of a very interesting addition!

"The Call Of The Wretched Sea" as a title is exactly what the album is all about and in cooperation with the cover of Ahab's debut it prepares the listener of what will follow. The album is almost flawless, but i have to admit that songs like "The Hunt", "Old Thunder", "Below The Sun" and "Ahab's Oath" are just perfect, evoking distress in the devastating atmosphere and the walls of sound this German trio manages to create in such a mesmerising way.

Concluding, just a few words, Ahab managed to release one of the best funeral doom releases of 2006, a release that can easily compete with big names in the scene. All you have to do is go and get it; and one last thing, welcome Ahab, because Germany's not only about Bethlehem and Worship!

Whale Ahead!

Performance: 10
Songwriting: 9
Originality: 9
Production: 9


Band profile: Ahab
Album: The Call Of The Wretched Sea


 



Written on 04.10.2006 by
DerRozzengarten
"It is myself I have never met, whose face is pasted on the underside of my mind."
More reviews by DerRozzengarten ››

Guest review by
Doc Godin

Rating:
9.2
Have you ever sat in your back yard at night staring up at the stars when you suddenly come to the unfortunate realization that your life is completely pitiful and insignificant? What? You haven't? Then I assume you have never heard this album!

Funeral doom... that's that really boring genre with no face-melting solos and the guitars going too slow, right? Wrong! The name of the game here is atmosphere, and never have I heard a band set up such a perfect atmosphere. Being a man who generally appreciates ferocious riffs above anything else, the word "atmospheric" generally doesn't attract me to an album, but after hearing "The Call Of The Wretched Sea" my eyes were opened to a whole new power some music can have. The tranquil, yet ominous, grandiose guitar leads, interspersed with the occasional heavy chugging "heave-ho!" type rhythm based sections would have made a great instrumental album on its own, but it doesn't end there. Laced in between the fantastic guitar work is some grotesque (albeit fairly unremarkable) growls, and some Gregorian-chant like clean vocals, that both really do justice to the type of scenes they are trying to portray. Now lets not forget the drumming! Though it usually plays its part effectively, yet fairly predictably - slow and thundering, occasionally you'll hear some great speed put into the drum work, while managing to maintain the tempo at a crushingly depressing crawl.

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published 30.06.2009 | Comments (9)



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Southern Wind - 05.10.2006 at 00:10  
Listened to it once and sounds pretty good... asnd yes I love the concept behind.
Sanctimonius - 05.10.2006 at 01:43  
I also listened to the album and i liked it pretty much, despite the genre isn't familiar to me. can someone please tell me who are the big names of Extreme Funeral Doom? thanks!
DerRozzengarten - 05.10.2006 at 02:14  
Written by Guest on 05.10.2006 at 01:43

I also listened to the album and i liked it pretty much, despite the genre isn't familiar to me. can someone please tell me who are the big names of Extreme Funeral Doom? thanks!

You can also check Wormphlegm, Tyranny, Worship, Nortt, Night Must Fall, The Funeral Orchestra, Stabat Mater and such!
Götter - 05.10.2006 at 09:01  
While I'm not sure if this album should actually be called funeral doom, and if it deserves a mark higher than you gave to, say, Wormphlegm, I must admit it has captured the Moby Dick'ish atmosphere quite well. And maybe I'll like it better after some more listenings.
Bas - 05.10.2006 at 21:41  
sounds interesting, might be worth listening to
Lucas - 07.10.2006 at 16:32  
I have it at home, but I have to wait till I get the Moby Dick book I ordered. I am so desperate to hear it and it is lying on my shelf, but I want the book with it, to read and listen. So damn annoying!!
Krankheit - 07.10.2006 at 22:06  
Great album
Lucas - 17.10.2006 at 22:21  
I love it to the core.
Pequod - 20.11.2006 at 22:06  
Great album, of funeral Doom...
Below The Sun, its the cherry on top of the cake
lenesu - 08.02.2007 at 10:26  
Do they have anything to do with mastodon? Both the cover and the title are clearly taken from Mastodon.
Promonex - 08.02.2007 at 11:23  
Written by lenesu on 08.02.2007 at 10:26

Do they have anything to do with mastodon? Both the cover and the title are clearly taken from Mastodon.

You don't happen to know what "Leviathan" was about, do you?
Enkaida - 08.02.2007 at 11:49  
Hahaha yeah. Mastodon's leviathan album was a Moby Dick concept album, this album by Ahab is also a Moby Dick concept album. Go read the book. Both good albums by the way.
lenesu - 13.02.2007 at 09:45  
Written by Promonex on 08.02.2007 at 11:23

Written by lenesu on 08.02.2007 at 10:26

Do they have anything to do with mastodon? Both the cover and the title are clearly taken from Mastodon.

You don't happen to know what "Leviathan" was about, do you?

Sorry, but you got me wrong. My idea was if they have any relations with mastodon (or mastodon with them) because you dont see everyday "Moby Dick" concept albums.
Promonex - 13.02.2007 at 11:43  
Well, you had said they adapted their concept from Mastodon and not from Moby Dick, so one could assume that you didn't know that both were based on a third source. But yeah, Ahab were formed at about the same time as Mastodon released "Leviathan", so there might be a connection, i.e. they might have been inspired by "Leviathan" to do something in the same vein.
Lucas - 18.05.2007 at 12:57  
Though it is of course a real different style.

Been about half a year since I first heard it, and I still listen to it regularly.
Bhavok - 23.05.2007 at 05:27  
I just can say, I love this album... I love this band.. its so dark, so whale-ish; I has so much whale essence.. its so salty... I feel like if I had lost my leg and arm by a Physeter macrocephalus bite every time i listen to it... argh!!
Vamp Wizard - 08.06.2007 at 20:07  
Moby dick definitely. Absolutely fantastic concept album. Even reminds me of Pinocchio in a humourious childish way.

This album has some fantastic technical musicianship without doubt and for there first album, wow. Watch this space.


Written by Guest on 05.10.2006 at 01:43

I also listened to the album and i liked it pretty much, despite the genre isn't familiar to me. can someone please tell me who are the big names of Extreme Funeral Doom? thanks!


You cant go wrong with the GODS: Skepticism, Shape of Despair and Esoteric. But these guys haven't the added advantage of a terrific drummer on board. Not that Skepticism doesnt, there drummer is probably the 'coolest' (yes cool is the only term that comes to mind (=/) but if its the pace you like as well, then maybe Agalloch is something you should try. Though, there slightly faster and wouldn't be classified as Funeral doom. For extreme funeral doom there is only Esoteric. There the bench mark nobody will ever surpass.
UnholyMenace - 17.06.2007 at 20:13  
I have read many good things about the album, but only recently had the chance to listen it myself. I have to agree, very good album indeed - next album in my wanted list.
Marcus - 15.11.2007 at 05:15  
This album is awesome, even my friends who hate metal (believe or not some people do) love this album. 10/10, this album is perfect absolutely.
__Az__ - 17.01.2008 at 01:31  
Have only recently discovered this band, and the album.

Ahab's portrayel of the story of Moby Dick is definately one that would be extremely unfortunate to ignore for any fan of Funeral Doom. Enermous praise must be given for the formation of such a macabre, lurid and downright dark depiction of events within Herman Melville's novel.

Musically, I find that within this particular Funeral Doom release it is both intrinsically powerful and captivating. The lengthened tracks only add to the overwhelming atmosphere of Doom and Loss which succeeds in drawing the listener ever closer.

I thorougly reccomend this to any Doom fan, and infact any metal fan at all. Absolutely essential.
Vokodlok - 04.03.2008 at 03:03  
Great album. I'm not going to go down to the details, I just want to say that you should listen to it. You wont regret it. If you dont like it you could contact me through my mail and I will explain what is so great about this album. Especialy if you are good lookin' female
Southern Wind - 04.03.2008 at 03:45  
As I said in my first post here, I liked this album, but almost a pair years after I think it was dreadfully overrated... it's good musically, but I think it lacks the minimal sense of danger, which is so important in this genre called funeral doom.
ylside - 16.03.2008 at 21:35  
A totally awesome album. 9/10
Mr. Doctor - 14.05.2008 at 19:08  
Written by Guest on 04.03.2008 at 03:45

I think it lacks the minimal sense of danger, which is so important in this genre called funeral doom.


I disagree... Maybe because I think that's a personal opinion. Not everyone has the same way to feel fear or danger.
I bought the album for a few days ago.. I don't sense some "dangerous" feelings.. but the album maked me feel very strange... In the middle of a big void.
Anyway... I don't fear the ocean. But I had so many problems with it that I have a heavy respect for it... And the whole cd was like a wave that hit me... And i felt very scary for it.

This is indeed my own opinion and I understand why some people would think that this isn't "dangerous" at all.

EDIT:

I just want to say something more... This album has one of the best kind of drummings I ever heard in my life. It really sounds scary at times. And kind of technical for a funeral doom band.
Powerslavex - 12.10.2010 at 20:35  
Not really into this funeral doom, but this album is really good, love the concept behind the album
TheBigRossowski - 29.10.2010 at 21:42  
Both albums fucking rule...

This is a great review, man! It's too early to compare the two, but I love them both. My mind is still wrapped around The Divinity of Oceans, but this album is just as magnificient.
snake? snaaaake! - 09.05.2011 at 00:34  
I need to listen again... Got bored the first time.
Troy Killjoy - 09.05.2011 at 02:34  
Written by snake? snaaaake! on 09.05.2011 at 00:34

I need to listen again... Got bored the first time.

Bored? Do you just not like funeral doom, because this is one of the genre's best albums.
snake? snaaaake! - 09.05.2011 at 09:34  
Written by Troy Killjoy on 09.05.2011 at 02:34

Written by snake? snaaaake! on 09.05.2011 at 00:34

I need to listen again... Got bored the first time.

Bored? Do you just not like funeral doom, because this is one of the genre's best albums.


It's my first funeral doom album, so yeah, it'll take some time. I've got only got a few doom albums in general so its a new sub genre for me.
Troy Killjoy - 09.05.2011 at 13:55  
Written by snake? snaaaake! on 09.05.2011 at 09:34

It's my first funeral doom album, so yeah, it'll take some time. I've got only got a few doom albums in general so its a new sub genre for me.

Well have fun with the new discoveries, just don't expect anything that will rip your face off in terms of speed.
@gent_-_orange - 01.08.2011 at 02:32  
After albums like this.... I realise that I need to listen to more doom.
adace1 - 30.12.2011 at 07:02  
This album is the best funeral doom has to offer. I've listened to other bands such as Evoken, Esoteric and Shape of Despair and none of them do it like Ahab does. Can't wait for their third album!
DLFJWSFI - 10.01.2012 at 13:09  
Written by EmperorIX on 29.12.2011 at 10:56

Written by Guest on 08.06.2007 at 20:07

Moby dick definitely. Absolutely fantastic concept album. Even reminds me of Pinocchio in a humourious childish way.

This album has some fantastic technical musicianship without doubt and for there first album, wow. Watch this space.


Written by Guest on 05.10.2006 at 01:43

I also listened to the album and i liked it pretty much, despite the genre isn't familiar to me. can someone please tell me who are the big names of Extreme Funeral Doom? thanks!


You cant go wrong with the GODS: Skepticism, Shape of Despair and Esoteric. But these guys haven't the added advantage of a terrific drummer on board. Not that Skepticism doesnt, there drummer is probably the 'coolest' (yes cool is the only term that comes to mind (=/) but if its the pace you like as well, then maybe Agalloch is something you should try. Though, there slightly faster and wouldn't be classified as Funeral doom. For extreme funeral doom there is only Esoteric. There the bench mark nobody will ever surpass.



I could not help but suggest the almighty Evoken, if you have not heard of them already. Antithesis Of Light - the best funeral doom record ever in my opinion.


Definitely Evoken. Evoken - A Caress of the void. What an album.

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