(TheMadIsraeli reviews the latest onslaught by Cannibal Corpse.)
PAIN! DEATH! FLESH,BLOOD AND BONES EVERYWHERE! EAT EVERYTHING AND EVERYONE! REDUCE DIET TO NOTHING BUT HUMAN BRAIN MATTER!
Cannibal fucking Corpse man.
Heretical-metal-fact-about-Israel time: I never really listened to Cannibal Corpse.
I know. I know. I cried, too, once I realized my heresy, my crime against the metal lords and masters. The hype ramping up to their new album Torture caused me to go back and truly explore the band. I listened to the entire discography back to front, and realized . . .
WHAT HAVE I BEEN FUCKING MISSING!?
Torture is the latest crusade in Cannibal Corpse’s tyrannical campaign to rule over everyone and everything with audio carnage so visceral that simply listening creates a serious risk of blood-vomiting convulsions. But Torture? Torture is officially the best album of the Corpsegrinder era yet.
By using the rewind button a bit and revisiting roots that had been missing from the band’s sound since Corspegrinder’s introduction, Cannibal Corpse have succeeded in producing the finest slab of savagery in their latter period.
There was an insanely high bar to surmount, of course, as the band’s last three efforts The Wretched Spawn, Kill, and Evisceration Plague were all astoundingly potent sessions of bodily decimation. The newer CC elements are still here in the form of the use of 7-string guitars and modern production, but otherwise this album, at least to my ears, is a total revisit to the more death-thrash leanings of Butchered At Birth, Tomb Of The Mutilated or The Bleeding. The technicality of the riffing has been cut back in favor of more meaty, more energetic riffs that are given a bit more air to breathe than we’ve heard from this band in a while.
Still, the music on Torture is really fucking fast. So fucking fast that I’m pretty sure headbanging in the appropriately fully-committed manner would result in multiple explosive brain hemorrhages followed by ejection of your eyeballs from their sockets, sparing you the sight of them exploding into clouds of red mist once they hit the first hard surface in the way of their trajectory.
“Demented Aggression”, by itself, is already too much of an overdose of brutality, carnage, and total oblivion for any normal person to handle. The riffs mount an assault that spawns imaginings of a thousand hives of demonic hornets wakened from their slumber to come roaring at you in a unified mass. The result is the only possible one: You, dead, swollen, leaking puss, spewing blood, and fucking owned.
As if that weren’t enough, “Sarcophagic Frenzy” then ushers your soul into a nether realm that is neither heaven nor hell, but an institution — no, an entire world — where the only word is pain, and the only belief is that you must take in all of it. The groove present throughout the song is SO FUCKING MEATY, the drums so cathartically pissed, the vocals so abysmally marsh-soaked in their gutturalness, the riffs so twisted.
“Scourge Of Iron” is a further level of punishment. One of the few slow numbers on the album, it is no less devastating. You are made to watch your loved ones destroyed by sledge hammers. Over, and over, and over, AND FUCKING OVER AGAIN. The main riff is so fucking fat it might as well be the lard contents of an obese, McDonalds-loving fucker liquefied and forced down your throat with a firehose.
“Encased In Concrete” is the next test of endurance. I see it like this . . . you’re encased in concrete, except your face is exposed, and then your hardened self is lowered into a vat of worms, cockroaches, and flies, and the vat you’re in acts like a fucking tumbler, tossing and turning you as you scream in terror, because the insects have found the face-opening in your concrete casing and have invited themselves into you.
“As Deep As The Knife Will Go” begins with your concrete casing being broken apart by masked men with ball-peen hammers. Then they start in on you. The sonic bludgeoning contained within the song is just fucking unreal, blast-beats all over the place and tremolo-picked lobotomies penetrating your skull at intervals so rapid that you don’t even know it’s happening.
You get the idea.
Excuse me while I finish massacring my town. You’ll know where I listened to this album when you see the news reports of mass crucifixions, with the victim’s guts spilled out through abdominal holes opened with a pick axe.