Obituary – “Inked In Blood” (Relapse Records)
One of the cornerstones of US and especially the Florida death metal scene, Obituary set the standard in the late 80s with their debut “Slowly We Rot”. The band were resilient throughout the grunge years, building a hardcore following across the growing international death metal scenes before reaching mainstream success with “The End Complete” in 1992. With the band disbanding for a brief hiatus in the late 90s, fan demand saw the inevitable reformation in 2005. Now onto their 9th album, “Inked in Blood” was financed by a Kickstarter campaign which raised so much money that the band are also recording a 4-part documentary filmed at the legendary Morrisound Recording Studios in Tampa! Now joined by new lead guitarist Kenny Andrews and famed ex original Death / Six Feet Under bassist Terry Butler, the core of the Tardy brothers and Trev Peres pretty much continues the classic Obituary sound on songs like ‘Violent By Nature’, ‘Centuries Of Lies’ and ‘Within A Dying Breed’. Slow, brooding riffs with a menacing bottom end that immediately grab you and never let up is how I’d best describe these guys, right from the first time I saw them in the late 80s to up until recently. Always catchy, they’ve now added a slight groove to their brutality which only serves to finesse their style and Andrews has thankfully stuck to the formula of wailing tremolo solos all of which add the perfect backdrop for John Tardy’s classic tortured vocal drawls – along with some new cool multiple vocal takes! All in all the return of these giants hasn’t seen any change to their classic sound, just a few hints of polish here and there, but overall I am highly pleased to say this death metal grinder is back to chew some fresh meat with a vengeance!!!