Album Review: tortured cannibal corpse

23 March 2012 | 2:55 pm | Brendan Crabb

The US death metal institution is in ferocious form again and although Torture isn’t a classic, there’s no shortage of aggression or intent, even after two decades-plus.

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Forget about a career second wind – Cannibal Corpse has unleashed a proverbial hurricane since 2006's career-defining Kill. The US death metal institution is in ferocious form again and although Torture isn't a classic, there's no shortage of aggression or intent, even after two decades-plus.

In recent times, Cannibal Corpse have been tighter and more technically proficient than many critics and cynics have given them credit for. Torture fuses their early work's feral intensity with the more accomplished musicianship of recent releases. Thus, these 12 songs slice and dice with greater gusto than Jack the Ripper. There aren't significant formula tweaks and, while long tagged as the AC/DC of death metal, they do get a little nastier with each ensuing album. The band has established a (pardon the pun) killer relationship with extreme metal uber producer Erik Rutan, who clearly knows exactly what they want and affords them a mix as snappy as a crocodile farm. Cracking song titles such as The Strangulation Chair, Followed Home Then Killed and Encased In Concrete aside, Sarcophagic Frenzy contains that trademark Cannibal Corpse groove and man-mountain George “Corpsegrinder” Fisher's throat-lacerating roar. Intestinal Crank's initial measured pace is ripped apart by a familiar, stop-on-a-dime tempo change. Scourge Of Iron also follows the slow-burning route, presenting riffs so monstrous they conjure up images of zombies so vividly depicted in their songs, while also channelling Morbid Angel's Where The Slime Live.

Cannibal Corpse blazed their trail long ago, so expecting them to continue doing so would be churlish. Death metal fanatics should enjoy Torture for what it is – another vital, urgent slab of brutality and cartoonish violence.


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