Cannibal Corpse – “Bible Of Butchery” Book (Metal Blade Records)
WTF – a Cannibal Corpse book? It almost defies the public’s perception of this most distasteful and shockingly offensive of all death metal bands once labelled a band who ‘…undermined the character of the [American] nation..’ according to Senator Bob Dole! Hot off their latest offering “A Skeletal Domain” comes this 170 page biography resplendent with glossy fotos throughout, a foreword written by Gene Hoglan, who met the band back in 1989 when they were touring with Dark Angel, and of course, in depth biographies of the members themselves: George “Corpsegrinder” Fisher (vox); guitarists Pat O’Brien and Rob Barrett; and old hands Alex Webster on bass and drummer Paul Mazurkiewicz. In between are 29 choice songs like ‘Entrails Ripped From A Virgins Cunt’, ‘Blunt Force Castration’ and ‘Death Walking Terror’ all given mini interviews as to the motivation behind their sadistic and gory lyrics, which are also printed in blood splattered red font! Lastly, complete with fan and band fotos is ‘…a brief history of murder, Cannibal Corpse’s gruesome first 25 years, told by the musicians who lived it – and survived to tell the tale..’. Although at first glance seemingly yet another rock biog, the band have sought not to repeat the minutia detail covered by their previous DVDs “Centuries of Torment” and “Global Evisceration”, but rather build on their personal histories with a recollection of their highlight memories thru their career along with a collection of filthy on the road anecdotes that certainly make those of us old enough relive the moment! All in all it adds, dare I say it, flesh onto the personalities of a band often perceived in the wrong light – and in actuality the complete opposite to who they are with Fisher openly admitting to be a high school drop out, yet heaping blame on no one except himself for pursuing his dream to be a singer while advising any young reader to do what he didn’t complete – an education. Rob Barrett’s tale is almost too close for comfort personally – a kid with an interest in electrical engineering who ended up losing that passion owing to bullying, and even worse, relegation to a detention centre where his only solace in his isolation away from the scumbags around him was – yep you guessed it – metal. Polish descended Paul Mazurkiewicz tells the familiar immigrant made good tale in the USA while Pat O’Brien and Alex Webster have amazingly had happy and even worse, normal childhoods! Disappointingly to some, there isn’t any inherent dysfunctionality that led the band along its gory path, but rather a desire to push out the boundaries, and in doing so become a cornerstone of US Death Metal. A definite must for all Cannibal Corpse fans and beyond that death metallers and avid biog readers, I wouldn’t say this is anywhere near as exciting as say a Kiss or Motley Crue tale, but more of a testimony of five normal guys with families who just wanna set the record straight i.e. that they are indeed just five normal guys doing a job that they love.