With Absolute Truth must come abolsute truth. The sophomore LP and continuing conceptual narrative from Portland one man death machine Becoming Akh is more complex, more technical and, sadly more unlistenable. Forsaking anything even remotely related to low-end frequencies, it’s painful to try and got to the admittedly technical prowess on display throughout the record.
This was another pickup from the Transcending Records grab bag I wrote about for Nine Circles, and when I listed this album there I think I may have been a bit generous in describing Absolute Truth. I can still hear the tight, progressive death metal chops Wittren is laying down, and it’s impressive but unfortunately makes the fact the production is so terrible even more beguiling…this guy can play, he can write….why can’t he hear how tinny and thin this is? I guess it has to be a premeditated choice, kind of like the last two Baroness records, full of great playing but marred by a way too hot production that clips everything to an inch of its life.
It’s such a shame, because the writing and playing are a step up from the previous EP Abolisher, which didn’t have the greatest production either but was still better than this. You can hear the effort that went into tracks like “The Jackal and the Hunter” and the four-part “Darkest Sermon” suite, the latter of which seems to address some of the production issues.
Why the whole album doesn’t do the same shall remain a mystery for the ages.