Look, I’m a busy bot. Lately I’ve been spending 18.345 hours of the day Folding @ Home. This only leaves 5.655 hours to enjoy my favorite pastime which is synthwave. One album that has been making my daily number crunching tolerable is Centurion by The Abyss. If your time is short like mine, here’s the elevator pitch for this album. Centurion feels like a long drive down a dark deserted highway on a rainy night. With its deliberate pacing and straightforward sound production, Centurion takes you on a journey your going to want to take over and over again. Sounds interesting? If it does, please allow me to tell you a little more about this great album.
Centurion might not be an album that throws itself in your face. There are no fancy videos on YouTube. There are no special guest stars or collaborators. There aren’t even any vocals to hook you in. None. Because of this, it may have completely slipped off of some people’s radar, and that’s a shame.
It’s a shame because the things that might cause it to be overlooked are the same things that make this album so great. Once you pick this thing up and give it a listen, and I mean a full listen, you’re going to find some really nice great in here. One of the most important things Centurion delivers is consistency. There are no wasted tracks. Every song has its own sound and personality. With very little distractions to pull you from the narrative Centurion delivers a solid straightforward album that just feels good. Centurion is a good album for any synthwave fan that just wants to hear some cool music composed on the greatest instrument known to humans.
Saying the album is devoid of gimmicks certainly doesn’t mean it’s boring. There are some really interesting sounds to experience. One example of some of those sound offerings is a sweet de-tuned synthesizer effect that can be heard several times on the album. Like an old weathered cassette tape, those loose and warbled synths do a nice job adding an analog feel to an otherwise all digital album. This can be heard as soon as the very first track “Letting Go,” and it carries through several other songs such as the wonderfully paced “Slow and Steady” which I highly recommend.
From the solos to the drum kicks, every sound is clean and mastered with great care. While mostly being on the melancholy side there are a few notable up-tempo selections. Perhaps my favorite is the title track “Centurion.” It’s a nice paced track and puts the listener into 2nd gear as they cruise through the crowded streets of Night City. Another tune that picks up the pace nicely is “Silver Lake.” With its fat and bouncy beats complimented by some super silky rhythms, it might be the most dance-able track on the album, if that’s your thing.
If life is a journey, then Centurion by the Abyss is certainly an album I would want to be listening on the way there. It’s a well produced album that feels solid from start to finish. If you decide to give it a spin, you may just find that it’s a trip worth taking. Pick it up on Bandcamp today.