GMP continues our series on Cannibal Corpse with “The Bleeding!” A concept album that leaves nothing to the imagination. It’s also a farewell to Chris Barnes and hello to riff machine Rob Barrett!
In 1991 Alice in Chains landed themselves a place on the Clash of the Titans tour, opening for Anthrax, Megadeth, and Slayer. Unsurprisingly, a band now synonymous with Grunge wasn’t fully embraced by the largely Thrash-devoted audiences. The irony of time is not just that Alice in Chains went on to commercially outshine the other bands that shared the stage with them on that tour, the years have seen their tentacles creep their way into many a metal band and sub-genre.
Grand Cadaver are another Death-Metal ‘supergroup’ who much like Bloodbath are unashamedly re-visiting the sound of their youth, and the iconic nineties Swedish style made famous by the likes of At The Gates, Entombed, et al.
In an ever-increasingly rich and exciting underground Death Metal scene in the UK, Celestial Sanctuary have been a prominent standard bearer and the ones most likely to break out to bigger things. 2021’s Soul Diminished was a case of a very strong debut album which also showed strong potential to be realised and was backed up with some feverishly received live outings, with the band maximising their opportunities with the likes of Undeath, so expectations on the follow up were always going to be high. Expectations which have been well and truly smashed with the immensely realised Insatiable Thirst For Torment (Church Road Records).
2023 continues to prove itself as a year of strong death metal as Horrendous drops their fifth album Ontological Mysterium (Season of Mist) and the Philly headbangers might have the year’s best death metal album on their hands, perhaps a bold statement given the fine releases the year has seen from the likes of Obituary, Frozen Soul, Creeping Death, Cattle Decapitation and Outer Heaven.
Incantation is one of the most influential death metal bands of all time. This legacy rests on the shoulders of guitarist John McEntee, who is the sole original member. To his credit, McEntee has been playing with the rest of the band long enough to build the kind of chemistry to make this feel like Incantation even in the absence of Craig Pillard, who went on to form Disma.
Anyone can make a concept album (which is not to say that it’s easy, but that it doesn’t depend on a particular musical style). That said, when it comes to the rock-opera-style concept album, the tendencies towards elaborate instrumental explorations and grand, dramatic spectacle often found in progressive rock and metal, provide particularly fertile ground. Pink Floyd, Queensryche, The Who, and many others have followed this path (coloured by their own particular musical approaches).
Inhuman Condition released just Fearsick last year and are already back with a brand new EP. Color me fuckin’ stoked! Fearsick was on my shortlist for the album of the year in 2022. When it comes to old-school slick and sick Death Metal, few do it better.
After a long-awaited return to NYC, progressive metal legends Cynic are welcomed back to celebrate 30 years of their album Focus at Manhattan’s Le Poisson Rouge. Joining them were fellow progressive metal and tech death titans Atheist. The tour also gave opportunities for openers from every city on the tour, and they surely did not disappoint.
To be perfectly frank, the biggest issue with Static Abyss’ Aborted from Reality (Peaceville Records) is that they decided to release the album the same year as Obituary’s recent destroyer, Dying of Everything. It’s been a consistent thorn on the side of Chris Reifert and Greg Wilkinson for quite some time as Obituary has always outshined their most well-known project, Autopsy, as well.