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I really need their first two full-lengths - 91%

redless, June 26th, 2011

Ok, so I have already reviewed their recent effort "The Destroyers Of All", and I figured out I needed to check some other stuff from them. So I went to the record store and bought this beauty for 8 euros. The shop owner told me that if I like Origin I'll also like this, as in "this is a technical death metal band". Well, they are indeed technical, but there is so much more than just that.

A warning to the fans who learnt about Ulcerate from "Everything is Fire" or "The Destroyers Of All": these two albums are very different from this one. Whereas this album has an amount of the creepy feeling their recent records feature, it's not moving in the same patterns.

The roles here are inverted, closer to the death metal standards, though exceeding them in terms of quality. There are more extremely brutal riffs and less drony dissonant chords. The band reminds me of a version of Necrophagist with less lead guitars. The leads, however, when present, are totally to the point, without any artistic exaggerations. My personal lead highlight is the ending mini-solo of "Subversive Supremacy". As for the riffs... They are all absolutely great.

The drumming is unexpectedly essential, too. It's giving the music a grim feeling similar to the one of their latest effort, but this is achieved via different ways. The peculiar use of the snare is what impressed me from the first listen. The guy uses the stick to hit the snare in different points, thus getting different sounds. The cool thing is that, whereas this could seem a little bit confusing, it makes the band's material even easier to follow, so much that I could even claim they're catchy - yet definitely not commercial or "pop-corn" death metal.

The bass is... bass. By that, I mean that in contrast to other technical bands, the bass doesn't play godlike-speed patterns which simply follow the riffs. The playing is exactly what you expect from a band that doesn't plainly copy Cynic: it determines the flow but doesn't interfere with the guitars. I have to admit that I usually don't pay much attention to the bass, so I can't say that it's one of the best things I've ever heard. But the album is definitely bassier (sic) than "...And Justice For All'.

Finally, the vocals. Ah, the vocals. The vocalist makes use of varied styles such as the grunt and the death growl, and he's pretty good. However, his voice was the only thing that bothered me about this compilation. The quality varies from song to song, but I guess that sometimes it's because of the production. In any case, it's not as though this is the worst vocalist I've ever heard. But I surely prefer their recent style.

Overall, this is a good choice if you like DEATH metal. I also guess you might find it cheap, as I did. If you do, and you don't know what to buy, this is a great choice. You'll enjoy this for sure. I did, at least.

The arrival of total fucking brutality - 90%

Invaginator, June 16th, 2007

Fresh and clean - that's how Ulcerate sound. Yes, there is some ulcerous phlegm seeping across the whole effort, this Best Of compilation released in 2006, but you can go over that, since 'Ulcerous Phlegm' is a Death/Grind, and Ulcerate a really harsh, fierce, violent Brutal Death Metal band. Don't you think you have heard enough of this "fresh new blood in the BDM scene" shit? Well, Ulcerate are a young band, with a shitload of potential and much power behind all the music. Their music is a mix of incarnated violence and technical surgery. They don't represent a band that wants to show how many arpeggios they can play without getting spontanously enflamed. No, these guys serve pure fucking murder feelings, hate and anger. And when you listen to it, you just wanna scream. But don't do that, that would be Emo shit like, and Emo is gay.

The little intro into the first song makes you believe there are some calm and tranquil parts. Wrong again! This shit blasts from song one to the last.Here you sense the old school of brutal Death Metal, and the new school, bringing in some core parts, but not too much, so it actually sounds truely like pure fucking Brutal Death Metal. Also you got several Grind parts, and today every self-respected brutal band has to have Grind in their music. The styles are getting mixed together, and in the end only the results count, like Machiavelli said. The most special about this band to me is their heritage. They come from a place where you actually can't have a huge killer scene, like New York City does have, and San Diego with all their Brutal Death Metal bands. But they have a huge number of bands, and most of them represent quality first, and New zealand and Australia to me have some of the best bands, bands that kill with their quality music, skills, no stupid images or shit like that - they just kick ass and don't give a shit about images or looks. Dawn of Azazel, Ulcerate, The Day Everything Became Nothing, Fuck...I'm Dead and Blood Duster.

And this band has power and stamina, as they seem not to take a break in destroying braincells with their music. And it's all about power and skill now, great solos, short, so the listener doesn't get bored from a ten-minute solo, like Malmsteen does. The music will catch you, and won't let you go, until your emaciated and exsanguinated - dry and bled out, and just another corpse in the corpse field. Man, this is just a Best Of compilation of their ealier works, imagine then the new release, OF FRACTURE AND FAILURE.