Her Menacing Pet – The Abyss Stares Back (Threateningly Melancholic Black Ambient)


Well, I did it, I judged a band by their name, but to be fair sometimes that equals review gold, like the perennial classic, and arguably worst band name in history, Clouds Taste Satanic. Her Menacing Pet, by contrast, sounded at first read like an overwrought, melodramatic foray into the goth by a tween who has yet to even have their allowance taken away. But then I realized it was from Slithering Black Records (duh), and it couldn’t be anything but dark in the not annoying way. I still want to know what the pet it, but I suppose leaving the image up the listener inevitable leads you into dark, sinful places, so actually, huh, it works quite well in the end. Let’s take that imagery further with The Abyss Stares Back.


A side project of “The Creeping Man” (Chris Campbell), Her Menacing Pet is black/dark ambient with a particular focus on melancholia, if song titles like “Melancholia of Soft Memories” aren’t clear on the fact. This kind of release can be hard to grasp if not experienced in the proper setting. In the case of The Abyss Stares Back, that is most likely the comedown from a panic attack after considering the frailty of life, possibly suicide. Her Menacing Pet develops slowly, yet in a threatening way. The listener floats in cavernous, dismal spaces, with the occasional ghost chatter and otherworldly voices making their appearance at times when you mind starts to lull, suddenly pulling you from it. Other points, cleverly, utilize brief moments of ritualistic ambient, tainting the dark pool with drops of blood that leave a taste of copper in the mouth. These moments are what help this succeed. Most ambient acts hold sounds for far too long, but The Abyss Stares Back is notable for its jarring refusal to adhere to this tradition. So shut off all the lights, black out the windows, turn off the heat (or turn up the cold depending on time of year), strip yourself bare, and let the sound wash over you until you sink into the shadows.


The Creeping Man Official Instagram

Written by Stanley, Devourer of Souls

Her Menacing Pet – The Abyss Stares Back
Slithering Black Records

Cover Art: Omen North
4.4 / 5