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Before these little trendy fucking pussies moved onto the wretched realms of generic-as-fuck deathcore, Cryptopsy was a helluva great band. Whenever I’m listening to them, I’m always stuck because I don’t know which of their best albums I prefer more, None So Vile, or today’s topic, Blasphemy Made Flesh. Both albums are classic death metal works, but as of today, I think I’d say that Blasphemy Made Flesh is the better of the two, and possibly one of the best death metal albums to come from Canada.
If you’re familiar with the Cryptopsy name, then you should know what to expect. This is incredibly aggressive, disgustingly guttural, brutal and technical death metal. In my humble opinion, I feel that every aspect of Cryptopsy’s sound was at its peak here, with the always-incomprehensible Lord Worm sounding at his best, even if that still means that I can’t understand a single word. Flo’s drumming, as usual, is impeccable, varying up his blastbeats like a champ. Despite being a total douchebag, Flo is definitely one of my favorite drummers because of his rather creative blasting styles, as well as the dexterity that he employs when doing on of his many transitions within a given song. Shit on his personality as you must, but the man is an awesome drummer. Martin Fergusson’s bass shines more clearly than ever on here, unleashing some ripping rhythms, while also providing an excellent low-end groove to often play as counterpoint to the guitars. This counterpoint adds a lot of fun to the songs, as sometime the bass works with the drums, and in other instances, it’ll follow the guitars, or just frolic about on its own. As for those pesky guitars, they sound fucking wonderful! That tone is simply sickening, and it compliments the bass sound so well. Not only does this guitar sound lend itself well to the groovier, slower riffs, but it makes the faster ones sound blisteringly evil. Most importantly, though, is that this album has a really clear mix that emphasizes each instrument and makes each have a clearly defined role.
With all of that aside, the most important part of this album is the songwriting. I’ve already mentioned Flo’s drumming techniques, which are incredibly tasteful if you ask me, but the entire songs, themselves, are also composed well. The tempo changes and transitions occur frequently and are executed perfectly, leading the every song being a unique, interesting piece of music. In particular, Cryptopsy’s slower sections provide great buld-ups, whether to a (real) breakdown, or to a faster section. The tension generate in these sections is simply excellent, even relative to other death metal bands at the time. However, one of my favorite aspects of Cryptopsy’s music in general is the tasteful soloing. Take the solo on ‘Abigor’ as an example of the really tasteful, melodic soloing that’s a staple on this album. There is no weedily bullshit here, but instead another means of creating contrast within the music. The solo is implemented not as a filler section, but rather a new direction within a song. This is how solos should be used!
Overall, this is a classic album with some of Cryptopsy’s best material. Sure, ‘Slit Your Guts’ has that awesome breakdown, but I’d be tempted to argue that Blasphemy Made Flesh is a more intense, in-your-face experience, especially with songs like ‘Abigor,’ ‘Open Face Surgery,’ ‘Serial Messiah,’ and ‘Gravaged (A Cryptopsy)’ leading the pack as some of the best tracks here. This thing is, even with all of the inaccessible traits that this album has, I consider it to be a rather accessible album for a death metal newbie. While the Lord Worm’s deathly shrieking (‘Serial Messiah’ at 3:04 is epic!) and grunting is probably the tipping point that pushes most people away, the production here makes his voice sound really good to the point where I can’t really see it being “painful” for someone not familiar with it. Bitches, just deal with the vocals, because this album is excellent. That’s all that really needs to be said.
Written for http://thenumberoftheblog.com/