Thursday, September 21, 2006

End Of The Year Candidate - Suffocation: “Suffocation”

The introduction known as “Oblivion” is the first ambient intro Suffocation has ever done. This is a sign that death metal pioneers actual do something that is needed in the genre, which is to make some sort of progression to keep the damn thing alive. Granted, the progression here is mostly improved production with most of the new elements being small details.

In the past, Suffocation has created songs that stand out, due to the slightly grindy nature, odd time signature changes, un-harmonious harmonies, and songs that do have some portions that repeat, but don’t quite fit with the verse chorus format. Granted, all those same things are still present, but now Suffocation has come much closer to creating an album as opposed to a good collection of songs.

After the intro, we begin with the quickly paced “Abomination Reborn”. The general high speed nature of the song is a bit of a departure for Suffocation, preferring in the past to revert to the safety of often moving to slower parts even in their fast songs. The guitar solo in “Abomination Reborn” takes place over several sonic change-ups, bringing what would typically be a slightly longer than average song a more epic feel.

We have experimentations with clean tones and strangely catchy melodies in “Redepmtion”, while the song “Entrails Of You” involves diving whammy bars in the creation of riffs.

One unfortunate aspect about this new self-titled album from Suffocation is that while the first half of the songs are part of a whole album entity, the second half comes off, just as in the past, merely a collection of songs. In the end though, I’d say we have one of the best albums of 2006 on our hands.


Suffocation At Relapse Records


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