"The Oath" is an EP release by German doom metal act Ahab. The EP was originally self-released in 2004 on CDr format and later through Deviant Records in January 2007. The latter release is limited to 150 handnumbered 12" vinyls. So "The Oath" is basically a demo that has later been reissued as an EP.
There´s not much demo quality about this release though. It´s professionally recorded and while it´s not polished it features a suiting gloomy atmospheric production to go along with the band´s brand of ultra heavy and atmospheric funeral doom. The sound production suits the music and visa versa. The music features very heavy beats, heavy riffing (pretty intricate at times and often using harmonies), atmosperic keyboards, and deep unintelligible growling vocals (and occasionally chanting clean vocals). The tracks are cleverly composed, which is where the band really excel. They are also skilled musicians, but if the material aren´t well written, that´s usually of little use. "The Oath" features four tracks and a full playing time of 35:22 minutes. "The Hunt" and "Ahab´s Oath" would, in re-recorded versions, make it unto Ahab´s debut full-length studio album "The Call Of The Wretched Sea (2006)", while "The Stream" and the short outro track are both exclusive to this release.
"The Oath" is what I´d call a very promising first release by Ahab. A release where their fascination with Moby-Dick (the 1851 novel by Herman Melville) and the ocean in general are initiated along with their brand of atmosperic funeral doom metal. A 3.5 star (70%) rating is deserved.