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  • Some may be turned off by the pounding double bass, detuned guitar riffs, and of course, the growling/screaming vocals, but I love every second of this album. Chuck Shuldiner and Death have developed so much since the days of “Scream Bloody Gore”. While SBG had simple riffs and gross lyrics, this album features much more technical and progressive songwriting and excellent lyrics. Mind you, it’s still heavy as hell, and unbelievably fast. Chuck Shuldiner was truly an outstanding guitarist. The riffs he wrote for this album are amazingly melodic and precise, yet complicated and very fast. His solos are fluent and melodic. The musicians accompanying him were the best he had worked with up until this point. Sean Reinert and Paul Masividal from Cynic joined on guitar and drums. If you’re familiar with Cynic, you should know they’re amazing. If you’re not, you can trust me on that one. Steve DiGiorgio is a bass god, who has worked with Sadus, Iced Earth and others. He plays those incredibly fast riffs with his fingers. Whoa!Chuck’s songwriting took a more progressive and technical turn here, but it’s still very much a straight Death Metal sound. “Flattening of Emotions” is about the best song ever, with it’s incredibly fast double bass and awesome trade-offs between Chuck and Paul during the solo. It’s also filled with Chuck’s powerful growl/yell, which has always made him my favorite death metal vocalist. The album’s fault, if it has one, is that it’s not that diverse. I don’t mind though, when the material is this good. “Suicide Machine”, “Together As One” “See Through Dreams” and “Secret of Face” are all stand-outs as well, which feature excellent riffing and amazing guitar solos. “Lack of Comprehension” is an awesome song too, with it’s awesome jazzy opening. “Cosmic Sea” is an instrumental with some extremely fluent soloing. It’s damn close to impossible to play those patterns as clean and fast as either Chuck or Paul plays them on this song.So, in short, this is more than another death metal album. Aside from their first few albums, Death has always had a more unique and innovative sound than most other death metal bands. In my opinion, Chuck also writes much more intelligent, thought out, and realistic lyrics. The average person can relate to many of Chuck’s later lyrics. If you’re interested in technical metal or death metal, you can’t go wrong with this album. Unless you’re turned off by the things mentioned in the first sentence of this review. I probably repeated myself a lot in this review, but oh well. The album’s just so damn good. Also recommended: Death – Symbolic, The Sound of Perserverance.

    Posted on January 31, 2010