Regardless of your opinion about Chris Barnes, you must admit one thing: the man knows what he's doing. Whether it's the jewels in Cannibal Corpse, Torture Killer, or Six Feet Under, Barnes is able to almost always produce solid material that hardly ever disappoints. Over a decade after his ejection from Cannibal Corpse and the formation of his main project, Barnes and his crew at Six Feet Under made Commandment in 2007. With the band's roots and power still at full strength, Commandment presents some of Six Feet Under's best work; the whole monster is chock full of great musicianship and stellar vocals.
Commandment demonstrates the union of Six Feet Under's regression to old-school groove techniques and the faction's progression into recent faster material. Roughly half the tunes here include slow, distorted groove riffs you'd find on Six Feet Under's debut whilst the other half is faster and in the vein of 13. The ongoing change of pace leaves the boredom at the door, and it's definitely a good blend of the two elements. The percussion is also well-paired with the guitar, considering the faster material is played at an accelerated pace with speedy snare hits and the slower stuff occupies deep patterns that usually focus on double bass rather than swiftness. I've been a fan of Six Feet Under for a long time, and I've never been impressed by the solos until I heard this record. The leads shown throughout Commandment are definitely more complex and enlightening than other soloing moments found on previous Six Feet Under albums. Musically speaking, this is one of Six Feet Under's best efforts.
Known to be the big cheese in Six Feet Under, Chris Barnes proves his worth as a death metal legend with another fantastic growling spectacle in Commandment. Barnes' incomparable low bellows conforms to the death metal attack wholly and utterly, all without flaws. It doesn't matter if it's a groove riff or a fast-paced note; he sounds great no matter what. Those who get annoyed by Barnes' squeals will be relieved to know they are heavily restricted and don't appear very much during this CD. With the pig bleats gone, Barnes is allowed to focus on his growls without forcing in any 'oinks' along the way. Once again, Chris Barnes delivers a capital performance of death growls and how grunts should be done.
I'm very satisfied with the outcome of this disc. Commandment stands as an album that will appeal to both hardcore Six Feet Under fans and those who are new to this famous death metal squad. There really isn't anything wrong with this record, so I suggest you pick this baby up if death metal makes you a happy camper.