Obituary has been around for a very long time. The brothers Tardy stick to their guns, rarely surprising us with their releases, choosing instead to stick to their chugging, groove-laden death metal. And, to be honest, I wouldn’t want it any other way. I respect the band for sticking to their guns so long as they continue to release albums as strong as this, their s/t new album.
One thing that immediately strikes you when you hit the play button is the production. Obituary has been guilty in the past of releasing decent records but with substandard production. This is not the case here. The ever-present chug of the guitars are right up in the mix along with Tardy’s bowel-spilling vocals, the drums are nice and loud and the bass rumbles along nicely too. The opening two tracks, ‘Brave’ and ‘Sentence Day’ are ferocious slices of curb-stomping death/thrash. The opening double-whammy beats you around the head with some epic riffing, punishing drums and some great lead work too. It’s a fine start.
Track 3, ‘A Lesson in Vengeance’ is a ripper. A monstrously chugging riff and a passionate Tardy vocal seal the deal in a terrific song. What a great start to the album, we’re three from three! ‘End It Now’ and ‘Kneel Before Me’ keep the momentum going, with ‘Kneel Before Me’ and its old-school death sounding guitar intro particularly impressing. ‘It Lives’ opens with a trademark Tardy growl and again has a bit of an old-school vibe to it. It’s not the albums best track, but it ain’t too shabby either. ‘Betrayed’ has a bit of an unusual riff to open, it’s not really your typical death-style riff but it has a great groove to it and Tardy sounds particularly possessed on this number. ‘Turned to Stone’ is classic Obituary, a grinding, swampy death metal gem with a typically great chorus, I love this track. ‘Straight to Hell’ is another face-melting tune. Once again, classic Obituary. ‘Ten Thousand Ways to Die’ is solid, but unspectacular and final bonus track ‘No Hope’ sees the band pick up the pace again, finishing off with a flourish of pounding rhythms and throat-shredding vocals! Wonderful!
Obituary have made a great album here with their self-titled tenth offering. They don’t break any new ground and their fan base won’t care one bit about that. The production is great, the band is tight, the vocals are great and most importantly the songs are right out of the top draw. A punishing death masterpiece from a band that shows no signs of slowing down. Obituary is a metal must buy!
5/5 rotting corpses
Pick up a copy from here.