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Written Before Listen

So If you don’t know, Cannibal Corpse is one of the most infamous and well-known names in death metal. To some, too mainstream and to others too brutal. Cannibal Corpse has always been controversial with their album covers, lyrical meaning and overall persona. Personally, I like death metal and i’ve listened to my fair share of classics but Cannibal Corpse is an artist I’ve yet to hear. With that being said, that streak is being broken and I’m finally listening to a Cannibal Corpse album.

Cannibal Corpse’s Placement Of Death Metal

I think it’s also important to mention the place that Cannibal Corpse has in the scene of Death Metal. Starting in 1988, the band formed during the rise of Death Metal itself. They are one of the remaining acts of that time that stayed together for this amount of time without losing artistic merit. Unfortunately bands like Entombed and Death can’t continue because the death of each bands frontmen. Cynic stopped making metal entirely and Morbid Angel hasn’t made a critically acclaimed album in over 20 years. What I’m trying to say is that despite Cannibal Corpse not being the best of that generation (at least in my opinion), they are still making albums that will get buzz around the metal scene.

Lineup Change

I think it’s important to note that this album contains a key lineup change. It’s not like Cannibal Corpse have no original members because Webster and Mazurkiewicz are still part of the lineup. This time guitarist Pat O’Brien was forced out of the band….due to the fact that they found 80 firearms and 3 skulls in his residence. He was replaced by former guitarist of Morbid Angel, Erik Rutan.


Cannibal Corpse might not be the most horrific group of all time, but they are nearly always in the conversation. 30 years into the game, they are still talking about violent, misanthropic and disturbing topics. It’s to the point where topics like cults, murderous rampages, war and victimization are considered tame. Cannibal Corpse aren’t shy about writing about cannibalism, extreme torture and so much more. It’s to the point where you can listen to this album, then try to forget about what you heard by watching a Tarantino movie…While finishing your popcorn.


One thing that I’ve realized about Cannibal Corpse is that they have some amazing production. Turns out this album is produced and mixed by newest Cannibal Corpse member Erik Rutan. The drums are mixed really well. Honestly, these drums are mic’d really well and dont have a lot of reverb. The guitars aren’t super crisp but still deliver in a ferocious way. The vocals are probably mixed the best here due to the fact that they are compressed at the right amount. The only thing that is not produced the best is the bass. The bass is kind of drenched and unhearable. There are only small amounts of time where I hear the bass but that is mainly when the bass is playing higher on the fretboard. Other than that though, I came out of this experience enjoying the mix and master of this record.


Before giving a verdict on this album, there are some things I think should be mentioned. Despite Rutan killing on the production end, his solos are underwhelming for the majority of this record. I also think some of Cannibal Corpse’s song structures can come off as predictable and like I predicted, Cannibal Corpse delivers the meat & potatoes of your usual death metal. Although that isn’t a bad thing, it still makes it a flat listen. Not knowing a Cannibal Corpse song, I always pictured them to sound exactly like this.


Overall, my first exposure to Cannibal Corpse was what I predicted it to be. I predicted it to be nothing more or less than pure Death Metal. There is no other genre, subgenere or even sub-sub genre that comes close to touching this record. It’s Death Metal. Luckily Death Metal (from what I’ve heard so far) is a genre I enjoy.



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