This album is probably the crowning jewel of this legendary grind band.The music is extremely heavy and the drumming is some of the best that I have ever heard on an album.Barney greenway’s vocals are at their peak here and the guitar work is excellent.If you are a fan of this band then you must own this one in your collection.METAL RULES!!!
These Oakland-based purveyors of the extreme rose from the ashes of some of the most influential bands to ever come out of the underground – Grimple, Schlong, ELDOPA (aka: 1332), Word Salad, Buzzov-en and OjoRojo – but they refuse to solely rest on their past accomplishments. Since their formation in early 2000, this maniacal quintet have been blurring the lines between grindcore, metal, punk, crust and thrash. Due to their energetic and sometimes violent live shows, the band quickly developed a loyal fanbase and were headlining Bay Area venues by their fourth show as a result. Now the time has come for the band to spread their unyielding wrath across this planet. WATCH THEM DIE are the shot of adrenaline that the currently stagnant metal scene is in so dire need of currently. WATCH THEM DIE are here to lay a beat down on all those that pose.
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This record marked Napalm’s Death transition from a pioneer Grincore masters to a not-so-standard Death Metal 5-piece.
It is an important record because the band faced many inward – and outward pressures.
Napalm Death’s classic line-up had just collapsed. Lee Dorian went on the form doomsters Cathedral. The joke at the time was that Dorian went from the fastest to the slowest band in the world. Bill Steer decided to stick with his original band, Carcass (he joined Napalm Death when Justin Broadrick exited to form Godflesh). It was good that he quit the band, because Napalm’s songwriting was suffering. Just compare the “Mentally Murdered” EP with Carcass’es “Symphonies of Sickness”, released on the same year (1989). The impression you get is that Steer’s best songs went straight to Carcass.
So, the surving members, Mick Harris and Shane Embury, went on to recruit top talent from the scene. Jesse Pintado, from the defunct Terrorizer, coupled with Mitch Harris, from Righteous Pigs, two of the best Grindcore guitar players America had to offer. The third recruit, “Barney” Greenway, came straight from UK Death Metal upstarts Benediction. With this “stellar” – undergroundwise – new line-up, they released the controversial “Harmony Corruption” (1990).
But, why “controversial”?
It was deemed too “clinical”, even by band members, and too many people accused them of “selling out”. They even went to Morrisound Studios, to record with the infamous Scott Burns, which added some substance to the latter accusation.
But why such a carrer move?
Just a year prior Tampa Bay metal masters Morbid Angel and Obituary had released “Altars of Madness” and “Slowly We Rot”, to great underground acclaim. In the same year Napalm Death released “Harmony Corruption”, Deicide unleashed their debut, Entombed spewed forth “Left Hand Path” and Obituary released their sophomore effort, “Cause of Death”.
Also, the “blast-beat-you-’til-your-ears-bleed” gimmick was already becoming stale… they just had to move on. So, all in all, “Harmony Corruption” was necessary, though doomed, release. They tried to ammend that with “Utopia Banished” (1992), which was faster and harder… but not necessarily better…
My suggestion? Stick to “Scum”, “Death by Manipulation”, “Fear Emptiness Despair” and all the records they’re releasing nowdays!
This is the most intense slab of metal to hit the streets since Slayer’s “Reign in Blood”. A mandatory for any metal fan. If this is the only album you buy this decade, you won’t be sorry! This is the only album I know of that can go from killer groove to sonic meltdown and back before the listener can reattach the missing limbs due to uncontrolable moshing frenzy! A must for anybody into thrash/death/black/power/etc. metal. I totally recommend this for all.
This review is well and truly late as this album has been around a long time. Metal is not the same as it once was Harmony Corruption will stand in time as a great example of death metal. If you want a gutsy industrial sound that only the likes of poms such as Napalm and Carcass can manage this is one of the best. With chunky churning riffs, tub thumping from hades and Barney’s soothing growls this is a ride worth taking from start to finish. The songs blend in to one album long story rather than just being track 1, track 2 etc in a way which works well and seems to suit this album. Favourites however include Unfit Earth with snarls that sound pleasant and timely, Suffer the Children and The Chains That Bind Us which reaches a crecendo with the line “the chains that bind us grooow strooonger”. All in all Napalm’s best easily.
This is not only the very first metal concept album, it is quite possibly the greatest metal album of all time. The album runs together in a way that is just incredible. Staggeringly simple and yet it draws you in. I have to say, I’ve read a lot of really dumb lyrics, especially in the metal genre, but Barney’s lyrics are wonderful, addressing the issues of creating such music without any real audience, all conveyed by the most powerful human voice ever and backed by one of the noisiest, ridiculously detuned great bands of all time. Especially amazing when you consider the fact that this band never made anything good before or after this album. If you’re interested in getting to know Napalm Death, this is the only place to look. Everything else, as I’ve clearly stated, sucks.