Overall Score: 9/10 songs: 9/10 production: 10/10 replay value: 9/10 Pros: A raw, visceral album that completely reinvigorates Cannibal Corpse Cons: virtually nothing
For over 30 years Cannibal Corpse have been innovators of violence. Delivering some of the most brutal and grotesque music that has ever been committed to tape. I imagine if you’re reading this you didn’t do so to get a history lesson, so let’s just say that every time they drop a new album, it is highly anticipated.
Violence Unimagined is Cannibal Corpse’s 15th studio album, and I think it would be fair to say at this point you know what you’re getting with them. This is however the first album featuring new guitarist and long time producer Erik Rutan (Hate Eternal & Former Morbid Angel) right off the bat, one of the things that is both refreshing and blindingly obvious is that the change in personnel has definitely not slowed the band down.
Usually a lineup change would signal a change in direction or at the very least some growing pains. Not in this case as Erik Rutan has produced the bands last 5 albums over the last 15 years including this one, so he is already very familiar with what makes the band who they are. He fits right in and the band hasn’t missed a bit. If anything they feel energised and have delivered one of their best albums.
Musically you know what you are going to get here, brutal over the top gore soaked death metal that will bludgeon your brain into viscera covered pieces. What you probably aren’t expecting though is giant grooves and hummable melodies, but this album has these in abundance, without sacrificing any of the brutality.
Inhumane Harvest, the albums lead single is one of the album’s catchiest tracks with a riff that will get lodged in your head, and I dare say you’ll find yourself humming along while listening. Surround, Kill, Devour is groovier than a multipack of McCoys crisps and actually has a chorus you can singalong to, this one will no doubt slay live when the band are able to tour again.
Bound and Burned and Overtorture go full thrash, with the former bringing in some of the albums best guitar work with some insane solo work that sounds like it’s being played by a pissed off octopus.Overtorture on the other hand is two and a half minutes of no nonsense bastard heavy thrash that comes barrelling through the speakers like a freight train from hell.
Violence Unimagined offers a little bit of something for everyone. For the diehard fans who have been left cold by some of the bands more recent works, this is the album you have been waiting for. This has a very classic feel to it, and it easily sits shoulder to shoulder with some of their best works. For anyone new to Cannibal Corpse, this will give you everything you need to start your journey with the band. It’s brutally efficient death metal written and performed by true masters of their craft that not only rewards long term fans, but should almost definitely open them up to a brand new fanbase in the process.
Violence Unimagined is out on Metal Blade Records on April 16th