(Below, NCS writer TheMadIsraeli reviews the new album by Suffocation.)
Suffocation are THE pinnacle of technical death metal. Every single moment of music they’ve written from Human Waste on has been full of eviscerating brutality, technical instrumentation brought together by one of the best senses of songwriting in the entirety of the genre, and the signature trademarks of Frank “The Tank” Mullen’s vocals, Terrance Hobbs’ indescribable but instantly recognizable brand of riffing, and in this particular case David Culross’s drumming (I think his approach on Despise The Sun was unique, and it definitely sounds like him here). So, the chance to review Pinnacle Of Bedlam was something I leaped at.
In addition to Vader and Dying Fetus, Suffocation are at the head of my trinity of brutality. No one has EVER matched up to this band’s body of work, not even close. They define the three things that make a great band: Consistency, legacy, and relevancy. I don’t think anyone would dare have the nerve to say Pierced From Within sounds old; at least to my ears, that album is as musically current as it ever was, which may raise some questions about the state of modern metal. What does it mean when many newer bands out now sound older and outdated while certain old school stalwarts still manage to sound not only relevant, but still ahead of the times? To this day, Suffocation still maintain a commitment to excellence and a standard of quality that exceed that of most other bands.
Pinnacle of Bedlam is the shit. That’s the essence of what I’m trying to say.