Thursday, June 16, 2011

Morbid Angel vs Death Metal

Greetings metal fans.  I have awakened from my slumber and after a week of listening to the newest Morbid Angel release and reading all of the reviews, it's time for the final word.

First off, I have a list of "must have" releases for 2011.  It includes Obscura, Origin, Opeth, Amon Amarth, Autopsy, Machine Head, Dream Theater, just to name a few.  Oh, how could I forget Morbid Angel.  I don't care when they release an album it will be a must buy for me as long as they are recording music.  It's in my Death Metal DNA.  Now I, along with the majority of all extreme metal fans as well, have been anticipating this release for nearly 8 years.  Does Illud Divinum Insanus deliver the what we expected?  Before you jump to a conclusion, let's think about that answer.  What is expected from what many consider to be one of the greatest death metal bands of all time?  Another version of Altars or Covenant?  Perhaps a continuation of Gateways or Heretic?  Just like each of you, after the first and second spin of this record, I was caught off guard.  Morbid Angel had taken a left turn and infused a style of music that we, as metal-heads, were not prepared for.  Or were we?  I am one of the fortunate fans that had been able to have a brief email correspondence with none other than Trey Azagthoth.   Over a few emails and the following of his myspace page, everything has slowly cleared my vision.  If you are a musician you are typically inspired by what you listen to, not just by what you play.  If anyone had really been paying attention to what Trey had been listening to over the years you would surely start to realize that he is a fan of heavy electronic/techno style music.  Now with that being said, it was still difficult to really give Illud a honest listen because I, too, was expecting something along the lines of Domination era Morbid Angel.  Now to the hard truth.  Illud is not a bad album, it was simply not was expected.  Morbid Angel requires you to adapt, overcome and really listen to what is going on.  Now on to the review.

Two things must be stated:  David Vincent is back and Pete Sandoval is on injured reserve.  Now with that said, I have read a lot of online reviews for this record and also this lineup.  I will openly state that if you think that replacement drummer Tim Yeung is a bad drummer not worthy enough to supply the beat on this record, than you need to have your hearing checked.  Purists may want Pete back but Tim is more than capable to handle the skins.  He is one of the best Death Metal drummers out there.  Period!  I want nothing more than to see Pete get back to 100% but until then, Tim will do just fine.

Track 1:  Omni Potens
It reminds me of Burzum.  At least prison era Burzum.

Track 2:  Too Extreme!
Not what you expected now is it.  The great vocals of Vincent are there, the crazy trademark guitar sounds of Azagthoth are there.  The lyrics are lacking in my opinion.  This sound is almost electronic with what may be a drum machine.  We are your new religion, no religion...

Track 3:  Existo Vulgore
This song is certainly what I expected.  Good tune.  Heavy as hell.  The drumming is supreme and vocals are traditional Vincent.  Weird chorus, almost catchy...

Track 4:  Blades for Baal
Oh shit, is this what I was waiting for?  Probably the best song on the album.  At least in my opinion.  Reminds me of early 90's death metal with exceptional production.  This needs to be a song played live.

Track 5:  I am Morbid
I have no idea what happened.  After track 3 and track 4, the train needed to change direction.  Although it is catchy as a song, it certainly was not expected from Morbid Angel.  Song has grown on me but still hard to digest.

Track 6:  10 More Dead
I actually like this one a lot.  The riffs and drumming set the pace for a grooving death metal song.  Funny lyrics, great production.

Track 7:  Destructos vs The Earth/Attack
With the first listen I clearly was saying what in the hell happened?  The scary thing that did happened was that this song has gotten stuck in my head and for some reason has grown on me.  No, I am neither drunk or high.  I want to hate this song but the truth is I can't get that fucking song out of my head...

Track 8:  Nevermore
Love the way this starts out.  Heavy and traditional sounding.  I was smiling while jamming this one.  It certainly has the flavor of Domination era MA.

Track 9:  Beauty Meets Beast
This songs starts out strong as well.  Not a bad song.  It feels mid paced and almost reminiscent of mid 90's death metal as well.  It will do.

Track 10:  Radikult
I don't even want to comment on this song.  Is this Metallica mixed with NWA? Skip!!!

Track 11:  Profundis-Mea Culpa
Weird song altogether.  I like it after hearing track 10.  Initially slow paced and not what I expected as an album closer.  The song picks up and actually is not as bad as most reviewers are slamming it to be.

After giving this album multiple listens and trying to figure this record out it has started to grow on me.  I initially felt that this beast was a clear failure for a legendary band that once gave me aural pleasure not matter which album I chose to spin.  That being said, I will say that my opinion is worth shit to most, but this album, although tarnished with electronic/techno style beats, is better than what many say.   I rate this album 6.5 out of 10.  That is the final word.

Let the comments begin...