This is their 13th album. Unlucky for some, maybe, but not this long lasting band of bloodthirsty veterans. A new Cannibal Corpse album is always something to get excited about and this one is no different.
There’s a reason that Cannibal Corpse are the biggest Death Metal band in the world. They know their stuff and they always deliver. Even the weaker of their albums is better than what most other Death metal bands can even dream of releasing.
So how does A Skeletal Season hold up against their sterling back catalogue? Pretty damn well is the answer. They’ve managed to release yet another class album of quality material.
By now any long-term fan of the band will know what to expect. Cannibal Corpse are remarkably consistent. Some see this as a failing, but the simple fact is that the Cannibal Corpse song formula is a winner and they always deliver the goods.
Cannibal Corpse are the very definition of timeless Death Metal. If you take any of their albums you can pretty much listen to any song and imagine it coming from almost any era of Metal. If you take any of their old songs they don’t sound particularly Old-School even today, (If you ignore the obvious differences in production), and if you take any of their new songs you can imagine them coming out decades ago, (again, production values notwithstanding). This, I think, is part of the Cannibal Corpse appeal – they always sound simultaneously established and fresh. That and the great songs of course.
This doesn’t mean that nothing ever changes though as each album brings something slightly different to the table. With A Skeletal Season the band have incorporated a hint of the more modern style of Death Metal into some of the riffs as well as some more atypical drum beats.
These are not things that stick out like sore thumbs or anything. You’ll never, ever mistake this for Deathcore, for example; but it’s apparent on a couple of tracks, most noticeably on the opener High Velocity Impact Spatter.
George ‘Corpsegrinder’ Fisher is on great form as always. He sounds especially harsh on this album but also very catchy. Songs like Kill or Become show him at his visceral best; interesting vocal patterns, memorable hooks and stand out moments you just don’t forget – “Fire up the chainsaw! Hack their fucking heads off“. It’s a hairs on the back of your neck moment.
The instruments are all played to perfection, as always. Infectious riffs, solid bass, pounding drums. The album has it all. To pick just one example; Vector of Cruelty showcases all of these, with audible underpinning bass, catchy rhythm guitars, screaming solos and quality growling sailing over the top of it all.
Well, at the end of the day this is Cannibal Corpse, what can you say? This is yet another fantastic album from the masters of Death Metal. I fail to see how anyone who likes Death Metal can dislike this band.