Abolitionist - The Vicious Rumor (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


The Vicious Rumor (2015)


Abolitionist, a three-piece from Portland, Oregon, have released what may be the band’s last album, which is called The Vicious Rumor. This LP goes by pretty quick because none of the 12 tracks surpass the two-and-a-half-minute mark. The band’s sound on The Vicious Rumor comes off as an edgier, darker, and sort of a less-melodic Dillinger Four that tends to lean more towards the hardcore realm. That being said this album was a good effort, but it just doesn’t stand out from the crowd all that much.

One of the tracks on this album is a song called “Dead on Mount Tabor.” This song starts out with a guitar-heavy, octave-filled intro. This quickly transitions into the verse where the guitar plays one high note over a pretty catchy bass line while the lead vocalist yells the lyrics. Soon after, the guitar begins to follow the bass line. All the chorus really consists of is a fairly simple progression of power chords from the highly distorted guitar, while the lead and back up vocalists yell the name of the song; something punk rock fans hear fairly consistently from other bands.

The most noteworthy track on The Vicious Rumor is the song “Burned on the Burnside.” This is where you can definitely hear Abolitionist’s hardcore leanings. This song has a very short and ominous guitar intro that quickly leads into the first verse. The guitarist makes a lot of use out of octaves, especially in the pre-chorus and choruses. There is also a very short and choppy bridge that follows. In all honesty I was expecting the bridge to sound awkward because I’ve heard a ton of bands try to do this and a lot can’t pull it off, but Abolitionist manage to make it sound pretty good here.

The Vicious Rumor is a solid album and Abolitionist is a solid band. Is there anything groundbreaking or original in their sound or lyrics on this album? Not really. This is very straightforward and conservative sounding punk rock album. There weren’t a whole lot of risks taken on this LP. If this is truly Abolitionist’s last album hopefully the members will be willing to venture out of their current element in whatever their next musical endeavors are.

You can check this album out here.

Note to my fellow vinyl nerds:
20 copies of this record were pressed in red vinyl, another 15 were pressed on light blue vinyl, and another 15 copies were pressed on white vinyl.