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Very impressive experimental deathgrind! - 95%

TheSunOfNothing, August 7th, 2009

"Anomalies" is Cephalic Carnage, the experimental grindcore band from Denver, Colorado's fourth album. Prior to this album, the band was fairly immature and focused largely on comedy. Here, we see the band maturing and focusing largely on the music and less on the sentiments of it (something that plagued CC's previous album, "Lucid Interval"). In other words, this is esentially CC's most "musical" album.

All the members shine on this album. Lenzig's vocals are a combination of deep, guttural death growls, high pitched shreiks, hardcore vocals, clean vocals, gurgled vocals, and a less guttural growl, often mixing all into the same song. He is truly one of a kind. Guitarists Zac Joe and Steve Goldberg's riffs are varied as well, containing grindcore, doom metal, southern rock, post-metal, jazz, slam death metal, hardcore, melodic death metal, blues, and metalcore influences together. The drums are played by John Merryman, who provides an extremly technical approach to something usually left at blast beats. John reminds me alot of Flo from Cryptopsy, if that gives you any idea. Finally, Jawsh Mullen's bass shines in the heavier songs, like "Piecemaker", where his bass is easily the driving force behind the brutality (the song also contains two moments when the bass is the only instrument playing, as does "the Will or the Way".) I wouldn't say Jawsh stands out a whole lot, but he's still a very good bassist, and he fits well with this band (although I'm pretty sure he isn't with them anymore.)

With so many genres mixed together, it's a wonder how the band is able to get everyone to remember everything for a show, as there are ALOT of riffs here. Not quite as much as Decapitated use on "Winds of Creation", but alot nonetheless. As far as the songs themselves, each song has it's own identity. Post-metal in "Ontogeny of Behaviour", Death n' Roll in "Piecemaker", technical/brutal death metal in "Enviovore", metalcore in "Dying Will be the Death of Me", the band's primal instincts in "Kill for Weed", and countless more.

As you can see, this band is probably very open minded as far as musical tastes and influences go, but the main influence here is...


Now, the only thing I've ever smoked is sausage, which is obviously not true for these guys. Even though weed doesn't seem to be near as large of an influence as it was on "Lucid Interval" or "Exploiting Dysfunction" (as there is only one weed track, "Kill For Weed") it's still obvious these guys haven't abandoned that comedic "hydro-grind" approach just yet, and I guess I'm glad because that makes it a fun record, not just your average everyday grindcore band who do nothing but shriek and blast.

9.5/10 Very impressive, and very very good as well. Very atypical for this genre, which is usually very unintelligent and simple. Long live Cephalic Carnage!