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Achieving a degree of recognition for their first two albums, Colorado based metal act Cephalic Carnage became a name in the grindcore scene pretty quickly. For those who don't know, this now-technical metal band's earliest stuff was very chaotic, burstfire, and piecemeal, keeping much in line with the fringe grindcore sound. From their album 'Lucid Interval' onwards however, Cephalic Carnage has shown an increasingly more technical, complex and inventive approach to their music. The band's latest offering only serves to develop Cephalic's existing new style, and assert their new stance as a technical death metal band over anything else. However, despite 'Misled By Certainty' being one of the band's most complex arrangements to date, the album suffers from very poor flow and an inconsistent song quality that mars what otherwise would have had the makings of an excellent album.
If anything can be said about Cephalic Carnage, it is that they are an immensely ambitious band, especially considering their origins. Leading the album with my favourite track 'The Incorrigible Flame,' they take no time to throw things into full motion, pairing highly intricate riffs with the less meticulous (and oftentimes inconsistent) vocal work of Lenzig Leal. While the album is almost entirely centered around metal and chaotic heaviness, there are a few exceptions to this rule, which end up making up some of the most interesting moments of the album. 'Ohrwurm' for example, invests it's first minute into a hypnotic bass riff, with some dissonant guitar work slowly building on top. The album's biggest surprise might come in the shape of the de facto closing track, 'Repangaea,' which goes as far as to have a saxophone solo to open the twelve minute piece. Also included are some grungy riffs that resound of sludge metal. Besides these scarce exceptions though, anyone listening to 'Misled By Certainty' can expect some viciously technical, well-played but at times slightly undercooked metal.
While the complex, melodic and technical work of the band is highly impressive, 'Misled By Certainty' finds it's biggest flaws in the sporadic grindcore interludes that appear to have been thoughtlessly thrown in between every few more involved tracks. Rarely clocking over thirty seconds, the grindcore forays are difficult to consider anything more than random noise, and while they may be extremely brief in nature, they serve to ruin the flow of the album completely.
While there's no doubt that Cephalic Carnage are immensely promising and talented with their material, 'Misled By Certainty' does get brought down by it's many flaws. It is gifted with a handful of very strong tracks however, and despite not feeling completely convincing, the segments that shine here, shine brightly indeed.