without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
The few times I've rolled through Indiana, likely en route to some Midwestern metal festival, it always seemed like a pretty peaceful place. Golden fields all around, nice people, tranquil roads... Masturbating corpses, torture cellars/cabins, and bloody, bursting wombs never crossed my path, but I bet it was all just a 'show' those folk were puttin' on. For, lurking in the rank corners and back roads of the Hoosier State was Gorgasm, a quartet of merciless murder mavens who were at that very moment thinking up perverse means to mine own end, in the form of Masticate to Dominate, their second and best full length effort wrought upon Unique Leader Records, and judging by the sound of the thing, I'm not sure it could have found a more suitable home...
The formula here was not an immense deviation from Bleeding Profusely, but perhaps why I hold this in higher regard is that it really finds the perfect balanced between the genre's penchant for brutality and the more musical, melodic tendencies Gorgasm wasn't shying away from on their older releases. That's not to say they evoke any 'warm' or 'tingly' feelings through their selected note progressions, unless depravity and necrophilia are your thing, but clearly these guys were never just content with plugging away uselessly on the same forgettable chug to blast patterns beaten to death by scores of undergrounders. That said, I did feel that Masticate to Dominate was a slightly more 'typical' sounding brutal death effort than its predecessor, little more than a smorgasboard of ideas previously manifest through Suffocation, Morbid Angel, Deicide, Deeds of Flesh, Malevolent Creation, Cryptopsy and the first few Cannibal Corpse efforts helmed by Corpsegrinder (Vile, Gallery of Suicide, Bloodthirst). Fortunately, that doesn't hinder the material from slurping your entrails out through a gaping puncture wound and then stomping on them while you watch.
A few carefully timed splatter/smut samples. Loads of start/stop tempos used to set up blasted patterns with their staccato streams of surgical muted rhythm guitars. Thicker, chugging breakdowns which hurt so bad you can feel them on your own palm. Guttural verbal secretions with a syllabic punctuation somewhere in between George Fisher and Lord Worm, with a slight tendency to return to those toilet bowl intonations the guys used on the older material. Muddied, acrobatic spikes of classical-guitar influenced scaling patterns pop up in places like the bridge of the title track, also paid forward from the earlier works. Gorgasm acquired not only another drummer here (their third in three records) in Terrence Manauis, but also a new bassist in Paul Garcia, so basically an entirely new rhythm section. But they pull it off, keeping the beats organic and rampant, the bass lines audible and instinctual against the rapid churning and spitting of the rhythm guitar.
It's neither rocket science nor the most complex material of its field, but the run and gun riff progressions and incessant hostility were a sadistic satisfaction guaranteed for the record's intended audience. Novelty and nuance are rarely felt through the composition, and it lacks some of the incendiary lead work that provided a number of the highlighted moments on Bleeding Profusely, but all in all the balance of riffing and tempo variation here is superior. Not to mention that they draw out the tracks to a more palatable duration of over 3 minutes, so the listener is given more time to actually 'get into' the contrast of blasts and grooves. I even felt a bit of giddy, gruesome, mortuary slab fun here in "Concubine of Despise" that reminded me fondly of the post-Carcass West Coasters like Impaled and Exhumed, though the vocals definitely remain loyally in the gurgling category without the growl/imp interchange you'd expect.
Admittedly, I wasn't immensely fond of the production here. The rhythm guitars are punchy, but both they and the melodic sequences feel a bit dry, especially in unison. Some added reverb, chorus, or other effects would have given Masticate to Dominate a more engrossing atmosphere, but at least it feels functional, and you can make out all the grunts and bass notes if you listen closely enough. The lyrics are grotesque, sexual perversions upon both the living and dead, zero political correctness, 'peaking' with the closer "Deadfuck" which is as accurate a summation of the entire experience as you'll get here. Jon Zig's arwork was easily identifiable and the best Gorgasm has yet used, but not something you'd want to show off to your Sorority sisters and their mothers at the next sponsorship gala. Masticate isn't perfect, and I've long crossed my fingers for the leads, atmosphere and maybe even an occasional synth line (as on the debut EP) would take a more prevalent role to balance out the brutality, but this was definitely an entertaining onslaught that they could be proud of. And MAYBE their moms and pops...but I doubt it.
If I were to take the awesome Reduced to Ashes album by Deeds of Flesh and dumb down half the riffs keep the weak sounding production add almost duplicate but less meaningful vocals I would basically have this album. That doesn’t sound like it would be that bad except they decided to basically make it feel all the more unimportant with annoying sound clips. To all the Future gore based bands, sound clips do not add to songs they almost always detract and sound clips over 5 seconds long will almost always make me flip to the next track or just ignore the whole album.
So forcing myself to listen to this album I hoped for some awaiting brilliant gore sounding riffs something Fleshcrawl, Deeds of Flesh, or Severe Torture could craft in a dark cave of bloody brutality. Alas I found not a riff that caught my ear and held my attention. Sure this album isn’t unlistenable but ultimate it has generic written all over it and the fact that they simply move from riff to riff systematically throughout every song makes the entire album seem completely forgettable.
The guitars are buried in the mix they don’t really stand out, but there’s no reason for them to as most all the riffs sound very similar, if deeds of flesh tried to play guitar with 1 hand. The drums are adequate but unmemorable you pretty much are stuck in the same exact tempo throughout the album. Not much in the way of time changes causing songs to seem to not go anywhere.
Overall I kept waiting for this album to do something, hit me with a great riff, violent drums. Had I not have listened to death metal for over 10 years now I would have thought this was a great album, But this is simply passable at best death metal. I would skip it and go pick up something more technical or melodic or way more brutal.
This is the epitome of brutal death metal, a real milestone of ass-smashing, cunt-stabbing, corpse-raping, crime spree-inducing, serial homicide-inspiring death metal. Get it immediately or you must weep, weep bitterly in your sleep, right up to the moment that some modern Richard Ramirez-copycat creeps inside your room, armed with a stabmixer, blowtorch and various assortment of sharp stabbing, cutting and piercing implements. As far as I am concerned, this would suffice for a review, because everything important has been said. But, being the fanboy I am, let me elaborate a bit.
It is hard to decide, which part of the whole is the most important thing for it’s mindcrushingly brutal atmosphere. The continuously pounding, blasting drums, which one not so much hears than feels for their bonecrunching intensity? The sharp, slashing riffs which alternatively sound like the stabs of a knife, smashes of ball-point hammer or the swings of an axe, or even like humongous cock entering the rotted orifice of something that has laid beneath the earth for a bit too long for anyone in their right mind to consider sexual intercourse? Or the vocals, which, I imagine, is something a serial killer must hear in his head as he is on the prowl for his next victim, a sinister being of unknown origin, screaming of the things one should perpetrate to the next person he encounters? Nay, it is not possible. All these things in unison, coupled with an exceptional production job, which gives all these parts of the heaviness and gravity they need to make it work. I am not kidding here. This shit is technical without sounding artificial or being an exercise in demonstrating ones skills on the fretboard, but with a way that evokes imagery of murder and a mind in chaos, as previously described.
Ever since I got this album, about -05 or so, this has enjoyed repeated listens on my stereo and serves as a something of a measuring stick against all the other brutal death metal I encounter and of which I am not really a great fan, as most just sound insipidly boring, unable to invoke the atmosphere, paint those mental images one gets from this release. The only flaw that I can think of about this release is the cartoonish artwork, and I don’t mean cartoonish in a good way. Aside from that minor flaw, this is a real diamond among death metal, a modern classic if there ever was one among the brutal death scene. If bands like Lividity, Deaden or the whole modern american death metal scene in general rocks your boat, you should dive for this like a stabmixer dives towards aforementioned copycat’s victim of choice.
Highlights (well, pretty much any of them, but out of some misplaced responsibility, the following are songs of special interest)
Corpsefiend, Masticate to Dominate, Charred Vaginal Effluence, Concubine of despise,
Just when you thought brutal death metal was made and listened to by the most stereotypical putrid shit-for-brains morons, Gorgasm cums along to prove you wrong.. a decade and a half ago, no less. Gorgasm is one of about one brutal death metal bands that actually has their own sound and get this, talent. They even make squeals sound -not- gay, you better believe it. Masticate to Dominate is their best effort and probably the best thing to rise from the sewer called brutal death metal, and after not hating it for some time I've actually decided to praise it, and they're not even paying me for it.
Masticate is technical and tiiight. It's insanely spastic from beginning to end and not in a shitty Brain Drill kind of way (Brain Drill is shitty you see) but in a gore-obsessed maniac kind of way. You can't fake this kind of lust for butchery, you just can't. Somehow they even manage to slow down at times and by the time you realize it the speedfreak insanity is back. Not only that but there's a couple of melodic parts on here, which are prolonged enough to add a new dimension but not enough to turn Gothenburg gay melodic. None of the effects are overused like.. way too many bands abuse them. It's nice to appreciate the art of solos and guitar harmonics instead of bombarding an album with them every five seconds. The drumming is purely demented. Someone give this guy a speeding ticket, hahahahaha, drumming this fast can't possibly be legal. And despite all this insanity Masticate to Dominate somehow manages to be smooth and cohesive. It's more than a bunch of strung together ADD induced riffs, nope there's actual songs here. Wow!!
Masticate to Dominate rules. This is brutal death metal at its finest and most unretarded. This entire album is intense. Go buy it and try to avoid running around with a chainsaw afterwards.
Holy fuck, this album is demented. Not only is it demented based on their lyrical and album themes, but the music requires you to change your pants after each listen. This is the definition of what brutal death metal should be. With crushing riffs and solos, tempo changes, and Terence Manauis' drumming, you cannot go wrong. Imagine Dying Fetus, but with a demented twist to it. Opening track "Anal Skewer" shows the band using its technical abilities well, with a sick riff at around 50 seconds that just leaves you breathless. "Stitched Oral Asphyia" demonstrates this well, when it kicks off at a fast pace, but after 2 minutes, some of the grooviest, slowest riffs dominate the track. The drumming on this album...shit son, calling Terence super talented behind the kit is an understatement. The blastbeats this guy performs can have him in league with other great death metal drummers like Derek Roddy and Flo Mounier. This CD shows well that Gorgasm is evolving and developing well, and they are not your average Suffocation worship brutal death metal band. This is a must buy for the brutal/technical death metal hybrid fan.
Have you ever thought that you were listening to the best bands out there that play a particular style?
I certainly did until by sheer chance after engaging in a discussion with a recent acquaintance involving the bonuses of Krisiun - who at the time had blown me away with the sheer intensity-yet-razorsharpness of 'Works Of Carnage' - the friend happened to mention a band by the name of Gorgasm.
Now, no doubt due to Derek Hoffman's former membership and Dave Culross' session work on the 'Bleeding Profusely' album, I'd had some very vague recollection of the bandname Gorgasm but had never listened to any of their stuff before.
Me in my ever so eager (read: obsessive) search for new bands thought 'fuck it' and ordered this album off the internet.
Quite simply this is awesome awesome stuff. I've never been highly proficient at adequately describing a band's particular sound, but for want of a highly-less trivial way of putting it, this album sounds kind of like Krisiun's razor-sharp attack only with bludgeoning sledgehammers coupled with lethal intent to use such force.
This isn't to say that the album is just sheer mindless brutality, slightly dubious sodomy/ cannibalism-related lyrics aside, it perfectly manages to be what I personally would definately term technical whilst still being absolutely fucking skullcrushingly brutal at the same time.
The best song in my opinion on this album is easily 'Anal Skewer' as it marries the technical attitude with the brutality perfectly in a 'total fucking metal' way.
I told you I wasn't very good at this descriptive technique more than just telling you that if you even remotely claim to like death metal, then quite frankly you NEED this album like a cheap whore needs crack.
Gorgasm does not screw around and the first track, Anal Skewer, shows this. They have begun to add more technicality to their music, but still keep it as heavy as ever. These guys work really well together and seem to know exactly what is needed to give the audiance the feel that they are looking for. You can tell when a band knows what they are doing and these guys certainly do. I love this cd, but it is not one of the best albums I have heard, so I cannot justify giving it more than a 95, but that doesn't mean that this isn't a must own for any death metal fan.
One of the things I love most about Gorgasm is there change in the tempos that they use. From the great fast death metal that we are all use to, to the slower pace seen in songs like Stitched Oral Asphyxia or even the title track. Even when they are slow they are just as heavy and still great. The speed element is what really can differenciat them from more death metal bands, they seem to have a perfect grasp on what they need to do to slow down the music without sacrificing what they are trying to do. In most songs they aren't slow for long amounts of time, but when they are it usually has a double base in the backround to keep the feel, but the guitar and singing gets the refreshing slower sense of the music.