Some records are so monumental that you need more than one opinion on them, particularly if those records have created this kind of feedback. In this case, we will be reviewing Morbid Angel‘s newest record. This is monumental, there is no other way to put it.


Morbid Angel // Illud Divinum Insanus
Rating: 1.5/5.0 —Insane? Yes.
Label: Season of Mist
Websites: morbidangel.com | myspace.com/morbidangel
Release Dates: EU: 2011.06.06 | US: 06.07.2011

Morbid Angel is elite death metal and has been the standard for as long as I can remember. They have defined death metal for listeners of the genre for decades, influenced all of the great bands to come out of the genre after them, and have been away for 8 long years. 2003′s Heretic was not the best record they’d ever produced, this is most certainly true. But there was no reason not to believe after hearing “Nevermore,” the single that was released ahead of time, that the return of David Vincent would usher in the kind of catastrophic reaction that has ensued. I make it my business to never read reviews of any record before I write my own review, hell, I haven’t even read Steel Druhm’s (which is below this one) of this record. But it was hard to miss the fury, anger and disappointment that has been floating around the ether. I had to ask myself “could it really possibly be this bad?” You see, I’m a stalwart defender of some pretty hated records (most notably Iron Maiden‘s The X Factor and Mayhem‘s Grand Declaration of War), and I try to listen to every record with a clean slate. And I attempted to do so with this record, as well.

So after the obligatory metal record intro entitled, cutely, “Omni Potens,” the damage starts and it is entitled “Too Extreme!” I’m not sure how familiar everyone is with the maxim of American politics “If you’re explaining, you’re losing,” but I think it’s time to coin that rule for metal. “Too Extreme!” is basically an industrial track with highly repetitive 8th note bass drum being carried by a shitty drum machine. This is a lot more akin to something that would have been in Vampire: Bloodlines than something that should be on a Morbid Angel record. Not only is the music mind-numbingly boring, but the lyrics are painfully fucking stupid. If you have to tell me how extreme you are, you are losing. And this isn’t the only time this happens, here. In fact, on “I Am Morbid” and “Radikult,” there is a weird, self-referential nature to the lyrics that just lose me. This is fucking “extreme metal”, not hip hop. Body Count ain’t in the house.

While the weird, bad, imitation Laibach is actually just a minority of songs, “Too Extreme!,” the odd “Destructos vs. The Earth / Attack,” the miserable “Radikult” and “Profundis – Mea Culpa,” the quality of the death metal isn’t very good either. “Existo Vulgore” and “Blades for Baal” came out the gate after the idiosyncratic “Too Extreme!” and made me think that maybe this record was salvageable after all. And I like both of these songs perfectly well even though Vincent’s vocals are A LITTLE HIGH IN THE FUCKING MIX and the drums are so goddamned replaced that they might as well be a drum machine (though Morbid Angel is hardly the only band guilty of this sin). However, “I Am Morbid” is oddly self-referential, as stated, and the chorus is obviously meant to be a “crowd pleaser,” but it’s just plain cheesy and the lyrics are bad. While “10 More Dead” starts out with a promising couple of riffs, it too just falls short of any of the glory that Morbid Angel is known for–though the blasts and solo in the second half are nice.

“Nevermore,” is an alright song, and it was the one that had given us all hope that this would be interesting. It, along with “Existo Vulgore,” “Blades for Baal,” pieces of “10 More Dead” and the interesting, but not very Morbid Angel “Beauty Meets Beast” basically make up the good and/or promising tracks on the record. And of 11 songs, having basically five good ones is a pretty bad batting average. So while these songs do make for some good moments and I think people have been unnecessarily hard on them, the long play album format is built for, well, straight listening and this record isn’t built for that. It’s the equivalent of hanging out with The Phantom of the Opera. Fine on one side, hideously beastly on the other side. And no one wants to fuck that guy for a reason. Am I right?

The reality is that the fans would’ve been bitchy about a mediocre record, but there is a feeling of utter betrayal and disgust because of what is contained herein. And there’s nothing that anyone can say that will make it better. This record isn’t good, even if it has its moments and it’s not just merely disappointing. It’s bad. The things that made Morbid Angel into the name that deserves to have a $119 wooden boxed set for pre-order are not the things that we as fans have gotten. And so while I encourage you to check this record out with an open mind, as I do for ALL records that I review, I can’t recommend Illud Divinum Insanus. ‘Cause it’s not good. And it was truly an insane move to even put it out under the Morbid Angel name and expect anything other than the uproar that has ensued.

EDIT: [Sunday, 06.05.2011, 14:39 CET]  –  It has been brought to my attention that the argument here is that these guys are doing something “new” and that the death metal scene is an unforgiving mistress who can’t handle anything new. To some extent I think it is true that the underground is fickle (I mean death metal elitists regularly bash Domination, which is a phenomenal record), and I have certainly experienced my own blow back for liking (or disliking) things that I’m “supposed” to like or dislike. It’s true.

I think the case with the new Morbid Angel is a lot less about the music being experimental and different, and more about the music being bad. Illud Divinum Insanus has some good metal on it (some won’t even go that far), but the issue is that the experimentation isn’t a) very experimental or b) good. For example, “Radikult” sounds like Marilyn Manson from the Golden Age of Grotesque and, probably, his earlier stuff as well. How about comparisons to Laibach, Rob Zombie, Electric Hellfire Club or Combichrist? These comparisons don’t come out of thin air: the point is that what Morbid Angel is doing has already been done. Not only has it been done, but it was done in the 1990s at the same time or shortly after the band had cemented its place as a death metal legend. There is no expansion of the borders of extremity here. Instead, there is an unusual, uncomfortable blending of these styles with otherwise passable death metal and being labeled as something that should be Grade A Prime Death Metal: Morbid Angel.

So in this case: both of these things are true. The ‘scene’ can be very closed minded. But the new Morbid Angel can also just be bad. Sometimes you can blame the scene. Most of the time, bands have only themselves to blame.

 


Morbid Angel // Illud Divinum Insanus
Rating: 1.0/5.0 —Altars of Badness
By: Steel Druhm

It’s never easy witnessing a legendary band utterly fail. It’s always accompanied with a blend of anger, confusion and a sense of betrayal, as if they crafted the offending album to intentionally disappoint. These unpleasant emotions have plagued yours truly for the past week as I played and replayed Morbid Angel‘s new opus Illud Divinum Insanus. As one of the founders of the Florida death metal sound, Morbid Angel released a series of brutal and enormously influential albums throughout the 90s and rightfully attained legendary status within the genre. Although their last great release was 1995′s Domination, I doubt anyone expected their reunion album to be as truly awful and embarrassing as this turned out to be. Yes, Illud Divinum Insanus is bad. In all truthfulness, it’s amazingly bad. It features one of the most incomprehensible directional changes in metal history and joins Celtic Frost‘s Cold Lake, Metallica‘s St. Anger and Crimson Glory‘s Strange and Beautiful as the biggest fails in metal history.

After a strange symphonic/industrial intro (which in retrospect is one of the album highlights), things immediately go to hell with “Too Extreme!” Featuring techno/industrial drums, electronica-drenched guitars, Rob Zombie style sound effects and samples and David Vincent’s digitally altered pseudo-death vox, the song is nothing short of a pop wannabe abomination. It’s something Ministry, Marilyn Manson and even Gwar would have had the sense to leave on the editing room floor, but here it is. It isn’t death metal and even worse, it isn’t good music regardless of genre. As you try to figure out what the shit just happened, they shift gears and deliver back to back death metal tracks (“Existo Vulgore” and “Blades of Baal”) which thankfully have the familiar Morbid Angel sound and style. Unfortunately, neither are stellar examples of that classic style and only “Blades of Baal” rises above generic. After that they deliver a dull, listless pep rally anthem (“I Am Morbid”) and a painfully medicore Machine Head-esque nu-metal dud (“10 More Dead”) that’s designed to be skipped. Things get truly bizarre with “Destructos vs. The Earth/Attack.” Words won’t do this one true justice. It’s a shockingly lame industrial rock song that I could see old White Zombie or  Electric Hellfire Club doing. It’s silly, insipid and proves this album isn’t meant to be taken seriously. As things continue to swirl down the toilet, they deliver two more death metal tracks (“Nevermore” and “Beauty Meets Beast”), both about average. Then the album hits rock bottom with a Slipknot reject called “Radikult” which has Hip Hop lyrics and sounds eerily like “Mambo No. 5″ by Lou Bega. Yes, I mean “a little bit of Azagthoth on my mind…” Every time this turd gets played, a Morbid Angel loses its wings.

Even when you set aside the ridiculous, album killing techno/industrial pop rubbish, the four death metal tracks really failed to impress me. While they sound heavy compared to accompanying dance club/Hip Hop pap, the awful truth is, only one stands out (barely) and the other three are dull, recycled examples of the Morbid Angel sound. None come near the quality level of their classic material and none would command attention if placed on any prior album. When you factor in the complete gator shit comprising the rest of the album, you’re left with an incoherent, disjointed, directionless morass of bad musical ideas that deserve scorn, derision and Amish-style public shunning.

Trey Azagthoth’s famous slashing, cutting riffs are largely absent here (there is a cool lead riff in “Nevermore” which is an old song) and David Vincent’s roar sounds less menacing than it used to (and he’s using cheeseball vocal effects on half the songs). The songwriting is either laughable or stale, sometimes both. The lyrics are some of the worst I’ve ever heard on a metal album and make this even more of a mock magnet. Everything feels watered down and thin like the drinks at a Times Square tourist bar. Perhaps they decided to merge the traditional Morbid Angel style with that of Vincent’s other band Genitortures, but in all honestly, the last Genitortures album is far better than this ill-conceived train-wreck.

I cannot for the life of me imagine what these guys hoped to accomplish with this album. They must have known it was laughably bad as they recorded it. The last track on the album is titled “Profundis-Mea Culpa.” That’s either meant as irony or a sincere apology for what they did. I prefer to think they meant it as an apology for staining their legacy, embarrassing themselves and wasting their fans’ time as they fall from legend to laughingstock. This has value as comedy or cautionary tale, not as death metal. Avoid it like a turducken gets avoided at a vegan buffet. Truly shameful and unforgivable.

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  • Bahamut

    I had to hear some songs from the album on YouTube after reading the comparison with St. Anger and Cold Lake and my god, I cannot believe this shit is real. It wouldn’t be crazy for anyone to assume the band was trolling with this piece of crap. I thought HammerFall’s Infected was going to be the worst of 2011 for me but then came this.

    • http://www.angrymetalguy.com Angry Metal Guy

      It’s hard for me not to say that this record will be 2011′s biggest disappointment. But Amaranthe takes the cake for the worst record I’ve heard of 2011. At least Thrones of Baal and Nevermore are decent songs.

      • http://gmail.com The Fox

        Blades for BAAL. Like it really matters haha

  • Zadion

    Judging from these reviews, I’m getting the impression that this album has an electronic / industrial sound. That said, do you suppose fans of those types of music would appreciate this album more?

    • http://www.angrymetalguy.com Angry Metal Guy

      No, because it’s not even good industrial. I guess I didn’t make that point clearly enough. This isn’t even good industrial. It’s really, really bad industrial. Bands like The Kovenant and Arcturus did far more interesting techno-industrial-flavored metal that was way fun and worth listening to. This is just like shitty house with bad riffing over it.

  • Akroma

    Bahamut, my friend. The worst of 2011 is entitled Amaranthe

  • Papias

    @Zadion: They’re not even decent industrial….

    I was expecting this album as the return of the kings of death metal and it proved to be one of the biggest disappointments for say this year for me. And I don’t mean just music-wise.

    I was not really angry, deep inside I knew they were getting old and Heretic and Gateways were just OKish – so all that was left was frustration and fuckin’ sadness. Thank God I watched red fang/intronaut/the ocean live and started smiling again.

  • Steel Druhm

    Even as industrial/nu-metal its shitty. As in just not good.

  • Dan

    “And of 11 songs, having basically five good ones is a pretty bad batting average.”

    That’s like .454, and actually that would be a PHENOMENAL batting average. Sorry, the baseball fan in me couldn’t let that one slide! haha…

    • http://www.angrymetalguy.com Angry Metal Guy

      Touché! Hahaha.

      But think of it like this: if the standard is batting 1.000, a .454 is doing pretty poorly. ;)

  • http://absurdhistory.wordpress.com/ Itihas Shetty

    LOL guys, I am in total agreement. check out my review as well. there is a discussion happening where the album is being defended in the strangest possible ways…

  • toiletboss, Australian death chapter

    Massive cringe.

    Just terrible. WTF were they thinking?!

    At least the new Origin disc, also out today, is crushing & praiseworthy.

    The jury is in & Hate Eternal has shit upon Morbid Angel from a great height & then ambled away laughing.

  • Gui

    1.5? Please, don’t be so kind…

  • JonSnow

    What’s even more disappointing is to read people like Sanders or Nergal defending this crap.

    • http://www.angrymetalguy.com Angry Metal Guy

      It sucks ’cause they’re getting their bros backs, I get that. But it’s just disingenuous.

    • CaitlynStark

      What do you know, Jon Snow? You’re just a bastard ;)

      In my opinion this CD sounds like it’s straight out of the 90s…That first song Too Extreme! just totally cracks me up. It makes me think of how every time I turned on the TV during the 90s I saw a commercial saying how their product was “Awesome!” and “Extreme!” Extreme tennis shoes, extreme deodorant, etc. This CD is just as cheesy as all of that haha

      • johan

        Huzzah, a Game of Thrones reference,a winner is you!

  • http://www.HeavyMetalMerchant.com HeavyMetalMerchant

    Mikael Akerfeldt from Opeth praised it as well, he is an astute musiclogist too. I guess its not always cool thing to diss a fellow musicians album. Although it seems hard imagining him listening to a song like Destructos vs / the earth attack or Radikult and thinking yes this album is my in top favorite 100 albums of all time.

    • JonSnow

      Well, what Akerfeldt said was more like “What Morbid Angel do is cool anyway because they are Morbid Angel”… wich is more honest than saying this album is well written and composed (as Karl Sanders did).

  • Mike

    can not agree with you guys more. this album is just a let down all the way. if doing something new in death metal means releasing fucking crap then id rather listen to the old stuff that all sounds the same, awesome

    theres SOOOOO many newer bands out there that deserve praise and recognition it is just silly to even give this album more then one or two listens

  • sidewinder

    In all honesty, it is not all that bad. I’m sure there are way worse releases this year. The only reason people are complaining is because this album was way overhyped to begin with. People had high expectations for a band that has been out of the scene for around eight years. At least it’s better than any other deathcore or metalcore album that comes out. It is still morbid angel nevertheless. Yes, it is definitely the worst out of all their studio albums. Can anyone answer why they also skipped letter “E?” They could not think of a title or what?

    • yerfuneral

      The ‘E’ album was a live album entitled ‘Entangled In Chaos’ which was also the last album to feature David Vincent.

      I have had nowhere the problem most people have had with the album but I was also a fan of the ‘God of Emptiness’ maxi-single with all its remixes and such.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_SJ7BHSH4GFBD2BZAG7I5TGL3IQ James

      entangled in chaos dumbass

  • Tom

    Currently listening to ‘Too Extreme!’ on youtube… It does sound like a bad Rob Zombie song lol. I can imagine the band performing this on stage with giant epilepsy inducing screens flashing “EXTREME!” behind them. I think what I dislike most about this song is the exclamation mark in the title

  • Ciaran

    @Tom:

    An exclamation mark in any album or song title is a definate tell-tale sign of crappiness.

    • Traitor to your Species

      Tell that to Megadeth.

      As a fan of industrial metal I can definitively say that this is an awful decade-late attempt at selling out. Normally, such a release as this would make nice benevolent snark-bait but seeing as it came from such a highly regarded and seminal death metal band (I don’t even enjoy osdm that much), it is just a depressing shame.

  • ndz

    OH COME ON!

    Vampire: Bloodlines’ music was much better than this and you know it!

    • http://www.angrymetalguy.com Angry Metal Guy

      Touhé. Haha. Actually, Genitorture has a track on Vampire: Bloodlines. :)

  • Curt Sibling

    Amazing the amount of butt-hurt this LP has caused among the self-proclaimed death-Metal elite fans! HaHa! I don’t think the new MA album is so bad, I can ignore all the “Too Extreeeme!” silliness. The rest is quite decent, methinks. Who cares what the “cool kids” think, anyway.

    • Steel Druhm

      By “cool kids” do you people who like actual death metal music?

      • http://www.angrymetalguy.com Angry Metal Guy

        LIKE!!

  • Kelvin

    I was crapping myself waiting for this and i actually soiled myself with fear when i heard too extreme . but now i cant stop listening too it because its so horrendous, Im gonna be goin to see these guys live just to see a few hundred blokes piss themselves laughing if they pull this shit on stage

  • Björn

    I still vote “In Remembrance” as the worst MA-song ever. :)

  • I.T.Warpath

    I won’t say anything more than in other places I’ve already said the same:
    “If the band/project featuring MORBID ANGEL members had to release this “I.D.I.” album as side project named (p.e.) R.ZOMBBID RAMMSTANGEL, and then will cntinue as MORBID ANGEL with it’s ordinary “I” album, I think, the fans will take this album as joke from a band and greet the new M.A. album with rapturous pleasure even if the recording will take ten or even more years after “Heretic”. Now, when after all these cheatings with more or less promising promo-single “Nevermore” the band has betrayed their fans (I say “betrayed” seriously), I (and I think more of their previous fans too) don’t know what to expect from the band in their further way. Hell, I have heard industrial music, I enjoy MINISTRY and I am a fan of LAIBACH. I even enjoy THE BERZERKER stuff. I have survived SAMAEL trasformation and I’m still a fan of that band. The same way I remember CORONER experiments with electronic music (“Grin” album) rhytms and influences and I worship this band. So electronic beats are nothing new in the extreme metal and they sound great if they are well made, but this, I’m sorry, but – WHAT IS THIS SHIT?!?!”

  • Sevologi

    Good album, atleast the metal songs!

  • Nimmer

    They should have waited for Pete to get better before recording. I CANNOT imagine him standing by idly while being replaced on half the tracks with this drum machine horsecock/shit. Actually, I have a theory: he realized what the bloated and frankly insane Azagthoth/Vincent egos were planning to concoct and was like “Ow, my back hurts guys… neeed… surgery.” I mean, the man had 8 years to get well and he bailed right before they started writing this aural ass-vomit stain… COINCIDENCE? I think not.

    But for the record, I like Vulgore and Baal. Nevermore is ok. The rest is pure shit.

  • ethios4

    This album is abysmal. I love extreme metal, been a MA fan since Altars, I love good industrial and extreme electronic music such as dark/horror psytrance, and I love bands that push things in an experimental direction even if it pisses off old fans. This album is none of those things.

    Ok, so David and Trey have been listening to a lot of “extreme techno” (whatever the fuck that means – no one that is into the world of extreme electronic music would ever use that term). This album is in no way even a decent attempt at combining “extreme techno” with death metal, or whatever they were trying to do. There is so much greatness that could have been achieved here but the result is utter fail. Again, I love both extreme metal and extreme electronic music, but this is just rubbish.

    The lyrics on this album are some of the worst fucking trash ever, and it reeks of the worst of David Vincent. It seems these guys have been riding high and mighty on their inflated egos and developed the mistaken assumption that they define good music and whatever turd they shit out will be golden by virtue of having dropped from the ass of Trey of David. Far from the truth, this album shows how truly out of touch they are with both the external world of extreme music, and with the internal world of their own creativity.

  • Exilemusic

    Oh my god! I vomited and crapped instantaneously when I heard the beginning of the first track “Too Extreme!”. We waited 16 years for David Vincent to do a new album with MA and THIS is what we get!? David Vincent is Dead. Meet “Evil D”. Trey is one of the greatest death metal guitarist ever and he sounds like Tom Morello on this album. It’s like a 7 year old wrote the riffs and lyrics for them. Lucky for Pete he didn’t participate in this album. Maybe he at least can save some face from not being associated with this atrocity. “Blades for Baal” is the only track worth a listen. The rest will make your brain explode and ooze out your nose and ears from the sheer juvenile crappiness you’d never expect from a Morbid Angel album. If you have to listen to it, go to youtube, don’t buy it for god’s sake. RIP Morbid Angel.

  • rvalerinc348

    Satan bless you, men you are so fucking in the right, cause this album is a waste of time and money, this isn’t a complain for a angry metal listener i’ts a complain from a fan, a really really mad fan of MORBID ANGEL, I love the fucking amazing COVENANT, but men this album is like wipe my ass without shit, it got no sense, is a shame because they are coming to my country for a concert and I pretty sure that I don’t go, by the way am from Costa Rica, see yo in hell…

  • Lamprim OF

    From what I’ve read, Punchy claims the only track with synth/keyboard is track 1 and there are no drum machines on the album. It’s album I, there’s a long way to go and people seem to be giving up on them really quickly and easily. He claimed some songs have 20+ guitar tracks layered and that everyone involved thinks the album is exactly what they were trying do.

    That being said, Radikult is the only one I have trouble with, and some of the campy lyrics. All in all it’s a very decent album.

    And they apologize at the end anyways. Mea Culpa. Jokes on you, angry listeners.

  • Anonymous

     “Waoh argh, waoh argh, waoh argh, WAOAOAOAOAOAOARGH” BUT, some of the stuff thou, ARE decent!

  • http://twitter.com/adhiwalker Adhi Anugroho

    Being a fan of Fear Factory and Strapping Young Lad, I think this album is top!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C44KXR5OARXURELPGGWJI23KCM J

    To preface my review:

    I’ve been a fan of Morbid Angel since the older days with Dave V’s first go around…

    I’m one of those that think Domination was the most well rounded, well played, produced, and AUTHENTIC of what the lineup of Vincent/Sandoval/Azgathoth/Rutan-Brunelle era- ever made.

    Sure there are the John Tucker era fans of the last three records.

    I was excited to hear about Dave V being back in the band a few years ago…  noting that Dave V does more vocal styles than tucker…  and not expecting a Domination II of any sort- but to pick up where they left off there- absoultely.

    end preface

    —-

    After listening to this album in its entirety…

    I can see how some fans of the new record- are disappointed.  But one must understand- with DV coming back in the band- you would have to expect the latest record- to be a bit different.

    There are those that feel that Extreme Metal is simply a 360 BPM contest that every album should sound exactly the same as the last- though I digress- it is not.

    I can say as a former artist- the first thing an artist wants to do is please themselves.  There is no sense in playing music if you don’t feel its an expression of who or what you are at- the time you write something.  It gets redundant to do the same thing over and over and hence- probably why they chose to write something completely different than past works.

    That said- after listening to the whole thing- from my point of view its written to where the listener are to basically soak in each track.  And listen for the changes and take in the vibes, its not written to just be full out aggression each measure of each song.

    If I have to pick three favorites off the record- definitely Volgoru, Nevermore and I Am Morbid-

    Let’s talk a bit about that last one- its is simply taking somewhat of Where the Slime live in a different direction.  So what- its not fast?  So what- its talking about what they feel.  Is written as an anthem of who and what they are- so it seems.  Nothing wrong with that.

    While I appreciate the separatist direction of radikult- perhaps it would have been better to hear elements it and mea culpa combined as one track at the close- and 2-3 other tracks in its place that are more the ‘standard angel’ and more approachable some fans were looking for.  Myself I find it refreshing to depart into other avenues on Too Extreme and Destructos and the mechanical voice Dave V used.  Lets remember- Extreme Music- is abrasive in not only speed- but is art in that it is different…  that’s the point to it or so I think.  How many of you were instantly MA fans to begin with?  Surely the first MA record you ever heard took 2-3 listens probably before you liked it is my guess…

    In closing…  following the ways of dark- only lead to deception.  If you feel deceived by this record because it is different than what your expectation were- that is satan working his magic…  a master of deception- it happens all the time- infecting the righteous to make other turn away because the right never changes…

    There is light there is dark…  I’ll bet a c-note any day of the week…  God doesn’t deceive, but the Devil- that’s his game.  The lightside will never trick- but only teach to look between the lines, to love thy enemies, and embrace change.

    Its refreshing to hear David V back in the band doing something different and more versatile vocals in Beauty Meets Beast and Nevermore, than Tucker ever did in the band- IMHO.

    I rarely if ever give 5 stars- as nothing in life is perfect.

    I give the record 3.5 of 5 stars for uniqueness, creativity, tight playing, staying true to roots but offering something new and fresh.

    Addition of another hatework, God of Emptiness or something that gave the 1-2 star reviewers something to like and comment more on, would of course- resulted in a 4.5 stars.

    In closing: Definitely a Insanus is a record that sets up a follow up to contrast itself as well to depart into something different and maybe- more accessible to fans who found this record- too difficult or different in concept to grasp.  If you don’t grasp it the first go around- take some time to just sit back and soak in the sounds without dissecting each passage and look at the piece as a whole- not the sum of its individual parts.

    End of line.

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  • forcesofodin

    The album is a damn shame, even Pete Sandoval publicly denounced it, saying it shouldn’t have been done with the Morbid Angel name. That said , I just saw them at the Worcester Palladium for their 2012 Illud Divinum tour and they are still the kings. Dave Vincent said “We know what you came here for, old school death metal.” They played many songs of their A, B, and C albums. Rapture, Maze of Torment, Chapel of Ghouls, Angel of Disease, Abominations.

    They only played two songs back-to-back from the new album, and they were fast and heavy enough to go by without disrupting an AMAZING performance. This being my fourth time seeing them, I can say without a doubt they were playing at their very best. The new drummer isn’t Pete and you could tell by the sound a bit , but mostly it was a good emulation. The new guitarist shocked me with how well he adapted himself to the Morbid Angel style, his solos meshed perfectly with Trey’s. Dave Vincent was energetic, and so clearly in touch with what Morbid Angel fans wanted to hear them play, his vocals were spot on, and as always his bass playing flawless despite singing while playing.

    Trey however, was at his best (that I’ve seen), every solo was a masterpiece, he played more of them than I’ve seen them do in the past, and his famous Chapel of Ghouls solo almost made me orgasm. He’s clearly never stopped training in, experimenting with, and obsessively loving his craft.

    So yes, the album sucks, but morbid angel knows it and their live performance is still the best because they accept that fact. If they ever make another album, it’ll at least be in the same vein as their classic material (though I doubt it’ll be as good, maybe more heretic like, if they ever do make an album which I doubt as well).