|Review: Cerebral Rot - Excretion of Mortality|
|Excretion of Mortality|
Label: 20 Buck Spin
Year released: 2021
Genre: Death Metal
Review online: July 28, 2021
Reviewed by: Micah.Ram
for:Excretion of Mortality
Rated 4.33/5 (86.67%) (3 Votes)
Those so-called "cavernous" Death Metal bands have become quite a significant movement in the realm of the subgenre, and while I've found the qualities of such bands interesting, I've never developed much deep interest towards any of them. Seattle's Cerebral Rot seem to be one of the front runners of the style at the moment, and while their 2019 debut album, Odious Descent into Decay, didn't strike much of a note with me, 2021's Excretion of Mortality has got me coming back for more.
What's different about this new album? Not much, actually. The style of music played here is more or less the same listeners should expect from the band whose previous album received very positive feedback. The difference is in the finer details here. The atmospheric qualities of this record are much denser than that of Odious Descent into Decay, really digging deeper into that "cavernous" territory. While this atmospheric plunge is noticeable in all aspects of the record, the area it most greatly enhanced is the drums, which sound massive without dominating the tracks in terms of presence. The timbral qualities on the drums greatly remind of Chris Reifert of Autopsy fame's drumming, most comparable to his work on Mental Funeral and onwards. What Drew O'Bryant has accomplished with the drums on this record is the most enjoyable element for me, which is a drum sound which really allows the mind to wander into dark and dangerous places that are supported by the music and lyrics. The opening drum beat of the first track, the title track, has a heavy groove with a memorable timbre on the cymbal hit which sounds like a blacksmith hard at work while the music brings the setting into the depths of darkness. While listening to this record, imagery from video games such as Dark Souls and even Super Metroid came to mind, as this music has such a dark and fiery atmosphere.
For those who are uninitiated to the band's music, this band sounds quite a bit like Fetid, which is perhaps expectable considering they're from the same Seattle scene and share a member in guitarist Clyle Lindstrom, who is the vocalist of Fetid. My findings were that this album shares much in common with the latest album of Fetid but does not reach high speeds as frequently. This album also has a much more atmospheric quality than that of Fetid. To find more familiar names to relate this release to, I felt it was much like taking the riffing of Bolt Thrower and injecting it with a twisted and dark sense found in the slower songs of Autopsy.
If you are someone like me who generally does not get too deeply interested in such cavernous Death Metal bands, I would highly encourage you to give this a few spins anyway, as the results are surprising. The places my mind has traveled during frequent listens were worth the experience alone, as the atmosphere is just perfect for bringing a sense of dread and even suspense at times. That repeated cycle at the beginning of the track "Retching Innards" certainly does a great job building a sense of suspense when it hangs for a moment, leaving the listener to wonder what's coming next. If I were to complain about anything at all, I just felt the closing track was quite long and among the least interesting tracks on the album. I like when albums finish strong, and this ending felt a little underwhelming given the length. Highlight tracks will vary with personal tastes, but my favorites were "Bowels of Decrepitude" and "Drowned in Malodor," both of which featured some of the most fun grooves and riffing on the album, as well as great drumming. Do not sleep on this one, Death Metal fans.
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