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kay - 52%

Noktorn, October 29th, 2009

This is kind of curious because this album actually gets less extreme as it goes on. The opening handful of tracks are surprisingly brutal; very extreme death/thrash loaded with blast beats and aggressive riffing. As it moves along though, something begins to shift; melodic, Gothenburg-inspired riffs begin to infiltrate along with a more traditionally thrashy style of composition. It becomes much less interesting when this happens, of course.

Anyway, Mortuary's style flickers between a more brutal, death inspired variety of thrash and a more melodic, Gothenburg-style one, and the mixture works rather off and on. Mortuary makes the sort of good but ultimately harmful decision to separate the styles pretty distinctly; the more brutal and more melodic tracks don't tend to intersect at all, which is good because Mortuary probably isn't very good at combining the styles, but it also gives the album a rather uneven, confusing feel. The band does attempt to ameliorate the problem a little bit by making the more brutal style flow into the more melodic, but it still makes the listener wonder what exactly the band's angle is. Additionally, the band's music really isn't exceptionally interesting in either mode, so I guess it's sort of a crapshoot either way.

Well, scratch that, the more brutal stuff is kind of interesting. It's weird to hear what's otherwise a pretty traditional style of death/thrash overdriven in such an obviously brutal way (real aggressive, drum-dominant production, very straightforward song structures, etc.); it doesn't really mean anything in the end but it's a nice curiosity for a few tracks. The problem is none of the riffs or song structures really have enough to them to make them really worthwhile listens, which comes out very obviously when the brutality drops out and the band leaves the riffs to do the talking: they don't have anything to say.

This doesn't suck but it's ultimately inconsequential and not necessary for anyone to listen to. I got it for like $3 which is about as much as you should ever spend on it. There's worse stuff but at the same time you can at least learn stuff from the really bad shit; this doesn't teach you anything. It just sits there which is possibly the worst thing a metal album can do.