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Machines eating the night. - 80%

Diamhea, January 28th, 2014

While Decapitated is theoretically defined as a technical death metal band, they don't live up to their categorization in Organic Hallucinosis' case. These tracks mainly manifest themselves as surges of groovy, atonal riffing passages paired with Vitek's usual jolting torrent. This doesn't mean Organic Hallucinosis is a bad album, just out of character for these Poles.

I would be lying if I said that I didn't dig a lot of this. "A Poem About an Old Prison Man" opens with a percussive eruption that quickly segues into Vogg's trademark churning riffs after a brief false start. I am indifferent to Covan's vocals on the whole but he is endearing on this one. The atmospheric, dissonant inclination of the second half of the song fades effectively into "Day 69". This is easily the best track here, featuring a potent build up of tension during the stop-start intro and destructive verses. The lyrics on this one are worth a mention, being about drug addicts and/or homeless people. I'm not sure which, but the line "Sewers running through my veins" is awesome. "Flash B(l)ack" is also memorable by virtue of the riffs alone. Vogg has achieved a very potent tone here: murky during the more atmospheric passages and gut-wrenching everywhere else.

Variation is still a problem, even while the record is mercifully short. This is always an issue with Decapitated albums and Organic Hallucinosis is no exception in this regard. Some of the heart of the album is pretty faceless and lacks a clear purpose. The primal delivery is fully intact, in fact "Post (?) Organic" gets quite fucking heavy; it just pales in comparison to the first two tracks. This brings us to the vocals. Covan's more measured, blackened roar has its moments, but can grow irritating. He sounds like he is holding back for some reason, which makes his screaming come off as gutted and inert at times. He is actually intelligible though, which is a plus in my book as you can actually follow the lyrics for a change.

Vitek's drumming is more inventive than it is quick. He seems a bit restrained here, never truly letting loose in the speed category. The groovy nature of a lot of these songs forces him to rely on stop-start bursts of double-bass and short passages of blasting. He never really gets a chance to put the pedal to the floor. It matters little though, as Organic Hallucinosis sounds amazing. I don't gush often regarding production values, but this album should be the aural blueprint of what modern death metal should sound like. The oft-disregarded bass is given a clear sense of purpose next to the rhythm of the kit. Everything merges together into a cohesive, determined assault on the senses.

Most fans seem to disregard Organic Hallucinosis due to the the unusual vocal approach. This is something of a shame, as there is a decent amount of quality material here; just don't expect it to be technical.