Monday, June 17, 2013

Suffocation: Pinnacle of Bedlam

Suffocation has never put out a bad album.  That is impressive.  Since rising out of the early 1990's New York death metal scene, Suffocation has been one of the most influential metal bands in the world.  Think of all of the genres we would not have without Suffocation.  We would not have brutal death metal, slam death metal, technical death metal, or deathcore.  It does not matter what you may or may not think of those genres, Suffocation is the band to which all bands in those genres strive to be.

Despite the band's long history, this is just their seventh full-length album.  This is due to a long hiatus from 1998 through 2004.  This is the band's first full-length without pioneering drummer Mike Smith who left the band in 2012.  Dave Culcross had been with the band briefly in the late 1990's so he was no stranger to the large shoes he had to fill.  Smith revolutionized death metal drumming and is largely responsible for the blastbeat style of drumming.

Well enough introductions, it's time for a new Suffocation album.  I was slightly disappointed with Blood Oath, which is not a big deal, since it was still a damn good album.  And I was a little concerned with how this album would go without Smith for the first time.  But it turned out to be business as usual in the Suffocation camp.  This album still absolutely crushes everything in sight.

All of the necessary elements for a Suffocation album are here: blastbeat-driven drums, heavier-than-fuck riffs, and the ferocious bark of frontman Frank Mullen.  Suffocation have once again proven that none of their imitators can ever hold a candle to the masters.  Suffocation is still one of the heaviest bands in the world and do not look like they will be giving up that title anytime soon.

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