Obituary - s/t

The first vinyl record I ever bought was Obituary's "Slowly We Rot" debut back in 1990 (yes roughly a year after it was released).  It blew my fucking mind!  The artwork with a rotting corpse in a shithole alley somewhere lay under that fucking mental logo!  I was 13/14 and recall being perhaps the most excited I have ever been at a release in my entire near 30 years of listening to metal.  The sounds that came out of the speakers when I got that back to my grandparents's place where I was staying at the time were just as fascinating, intoxicating and fucked up as that artwork on the sleeve!  I recall using my granddad's rather well set up stereo system to play it and he swore it was broken when he heard the first track with me, took me few minutes to convince him that it was supposed to sound like that.

Anyway, trip down memory lane aside the purpose of today's post is to review Obituary's latest release.  The rationale behind my masturbation of my teenage years with "Slowly We Rot" is that their latest release reminds me so much of both the sound and structure of their debut that I couldn't write the review without that build up.  The other thing that is also reminiscent of their album from nearly 30 years ago is the fucking energy that drips from this record.  "Inked In Blood" has energy, but it more seeped through in parts, whereas the self-titled opus spits energy all over you as it spins on your turntable.

There are reviews and posts on forums all over the internet praising this as Obituary's finest hour whether that is since "Cause Of Death" or "The End Complete" being the only real bone of contention between each one.  Whilst I can agree it is their strongest since "The End Complete" it is most certainly nowhere near "Cause Of Death" in terms of brilliance but the focus should be on the consistency of the delivery of this record.  It is the first album in a while that has carried that presence of the group I first listened to in my Grandparent's front room all those years ago.  The vibrancy of a group of musicians starting a journey is back, or rather a new leg of an already well trodden journey perhaps.

Across 11 tracks (10 and a bonus track) there is a variety of rampant gallop, melodeath hooks and menacing paced death/doom that cannot fail to hold your attention.  In places it is catchy, in others it switches up so regularly you really have to pay attention as the arrangements and structures continue to shift gears and form.

There's no getting away from the fact that a band who released their first album back in 1989 have just dropped one of their finest pieces of material in an age where death metal only seems to get more cavernous, blackened and murky in sound.  It stands up well considering no wheels really get invented at anytime yet by the same token nobody really wanted it to.  I am perfectly happy to sit here fooling myself into thinking I am a teenager again who has just discovered a great new record.



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