Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Review: Cannibal Corpse - Torture

 Like many death metal enthusiasts, my first purchase of the genre was Cannibal Corpse's 1992 disgust inducing Tomb of the Mutilated and like many, as my love for the genre began to grow, I wondered just how good a choice starting with that album was. They are a very extreme band to start on. They are in many ways definitive death metal. Lyrics splattered with blood and gore, musical arrangement always frantic and brutal, Cannibal Corpse aren't so much a band that comes with a bite to listeners, they are a band that smashes their listeners in the face. With a hammer. Obviously.

 Though the sense of shock within Cannibal Corpse's music isn't really that present any more, it is still awe-inspiring in a brutal (I may use that word a few more times) sort of way particularly in their newer work with Erik Rutan at production and the overall vibe on their twelfth studio offering Torture is no different. As the finely arranged music provides impressive riffing skills from Pat O'Brien  and Rob Barrett on tracks like Scourge of Iron, a song that sees this guitar work being slowly pressed down into listeners eardrums as deep as possible and the brutal chugging found on Encased in Concrete, which is a sign of death metal sounding as classy as Deicide manage to make it. Yeah, also as my love of death metal has expanded I've definitely come to find that Deicide are a far superior band to Cannibal Corpse. Make what you will of that.
 So, it's basically moments like these sections of music that really have a blood-soaked spark covering them that really make this album and on Torture, there sadly isn't enough music like this to be found. Tracks The Strangulation Chair, Caged... Contorted and Crucifier Avenged may be high on frantic riffs and brutality but low on real substance and things start to get pretty dull from there. There's little distinguishable features to be found within these songs and frankly difficult to tell them apart from each other. I know right now I probably sound like one of those totally anti-death metal "Waah it's not real music" kind of people but the constant intensity and brutality does get pretty mindless after a while. It would help this album if it were maybe more dynamic. Like Deicide.
 So, if you're looking for an album that provides you with non stop headbanging opportunities, this album is probably your favourite album of 2012 already, but if you want a little more substance and dynamism in your music, I would try looking at Corpse's earlier material. Tomb of the Mutilated, Gallery of Suicide, even 2006's Kill has a better offering. Or Deicide. Torture has a problem of having too many tracks and not enough music. There's little on here that makes Cannibal Corpse anything similar to one of the most feared bands of the 1990's who frequently saw their distribution being banned across the globe that they once were.

 Cannibal Corpse's Torture is out now via Metal Blade.

No comments:

Post a Comment