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Well I guess they fixed the problems but GODDAMMIT - 71%

MutantClannfear, June 24th, 2013

Umm... okay? I seriously hope this is the last time in the history of BDM that a band gets bitten by the modern bug and actually ends up sounding better than they did before, because that is a terrible example to set for the slam death metal scene; but nevertheless, Vulvectomy's Abusing Dismembered Beauties is a definite improvement over the monochromatic approach the band got stuck in around the same time as Post-Abortion Slut Fuck. Deep down I simultaneously also hate this release because it shows that Vulvectomy have totally given up on trying to recapture their good old-fashioned wiggery sound and have moved straight on to modern, sterile, overly melodic and insincere slam, but at the same time this is definitely better than the fair amount of modern slam bands you'll run into.

Vulvectomy's music once again draws parallelisms to Cephalotripsy, though a different era - melodically, this reminds me exactly of Cephalotripsy's 2011 promo. Both that release and Abusing Dismembered Beauties are full of those synthetic, tuned-to-C slams with oddly pronounced melodies that never actually go anywhere, and the guitar tone (while regrettably modern) is big and fat enough for the slams to have some sort of imposing quality to them regardless of how they're actually written. Of course, apparently determined to be eternal idiot savants regardless of what style of BDM they're playing, Vulvectomy take what Cephalotripsy are doing and dumb it down to the point where even the mentally retarded are included in the target audience - the complex, mind-bending rhythmic shifts are all taken out, and replaced with almost admirably straightforward slams mixed with your occasional unremarkable slam/deathcore tremolo riff.

The songwriting's definitely improved, as there are now actual differences between any two tracks again, though the order of the riffs is still entirely irrelevant to the song and the band are still getting uncomfortably repetitive. The 3/4 riffs are back but they're not as cool this time around; likewise, triplet patterns have made a return but they're less chunky and more like an attempt to ape nu-Pathology. But I guess the most important thing is that the slams are definitely catchier again and manage to avoid being completely boring throughout the running time of Abusing Dismembered Beauties - I mean, I don't feel ashamed to say that I nod my head from side to side in response to it; the slams (particularly the faster ones) are all rather groovy. It's just that I don't really understand the point of slam like this, at all - it sounds neutered, like someone took all the evil and malevolence and, well, death metal feeling out of the genre and replaced it with FUN and CATCHINESS and GOOD WILL TO MEN and other dumb shit like that. It's catchy, I guess, but no catchier than Cephalotripsy or Epicardiectomy, plus those bands actually SOUND LIKE DEATH METAL so shit like Abusing Dismembered Beauties has no reason to exist except maybe to appeal to shitweiners who like the concept of slam but not death metal (the accepted term for people like this is "Emmure fans").

The band are still using a drum machine after existing for six years, the reasoning behind which I doubt I'll ever be able to understand. The drum machine sounds even more sterile and deliberately fake than it did on past albums (especially the clicky, unsatisfying snare sample), though of course it was probably intentional this time in an attempt to sound closer to Pathology. It's worth noting that the beats on this album are a bit more complex than they ever have been - I mean, there are even fills in the music now! - but it doesn't really mean anything to me one way or the other because I'm too busy trying to wrap my head around why I should appreciate an album that's basically just Cerebral Bore with fewer faster sections. At least Diego Fanelli has somewhat improved; I guess you could call his performance here the average between Putrescent Clitoral Fermentation and Post-Abortion Slut Fuck, but it thankfully leans a bit heavier towards the former. His gutturals aren't as masked by noise anymore, and while they're not punchy like they were on the debut album, they still have that endearing style where he just mixes-and-matches four or five different syllables to make vocal lines. They sound oddly buried in the mix, though, and masked by a bit of echo, which strips them of a bit of their power. What's the harm in letting this album have a bit more vocal presence when he easily sounds just as good as the actual slams being played?

Overall, this album reminds me of trying to deal with a smartass seven-year-old kid. You tell him to get that ketchup glob off his shirt and he gets it off, then smears it all over his pant leg. You tell him not to play in oncoming traffic, so he stands stoically and makes it very clear that he isn't doing anything remotely close to "playing". I mean, yeah Vulvectomy, you fixed the problem, but you were kiiiiiinda supposed to do that by, you know, just improving your songwriting. Not giving the entire sound a goofy overhaul to sound cheesy and modern to appease the current slam scene's shitty wishes. This isn't bad, and for what it is it's probably even above average, but come on, surely there's got to be some mid-2000s BDM band you haven't heard yet that you could check out before you give this a shot. A mid-2000s band who ACTUALLY SOUND LIKE DEATH METAL, at that (as if there was even the need to make the distinction back then).