Vomitory - Opus Mortis VIII Review
by Matt Hensch
Consider me a critical ass that has nothing amazing to say about Vomitory. I like some of their material (especially "Revelation Nausea") and enjoy the assault they always deliver without a stutter, but that's always been too much of a double-edge sword for my tastes. I see Vomitory as a weed absorbing death metal's standard ideals while making an effort to not appear like anything else. "Opus Mortis VIII" continues Vomitory's butchering pedigree, adding another slash to the band's collection of dismembered bodies and legacy of cannibalistic violence. Yea, it sounds awesome, but I'm just not impressed. Vomitory seems to be circling around this self-mirroring death metal which stays locked in its five-by-eight cell for twenty hours a day. Clearly, the gimmick is depleting rapidly.
Generally speaking, it seems the clichιs and expectations that usually fornicate around Vomitory are systemically turning against the band. Erik Rundqvist's guttural growls stay monotone and painfully uninspired throughout. The guitar work shifts from chord-burning speed to slow-roasted grooves ala Bolt Thrower in a thick shell of venomous distortion; the drums, too, are layered in blast beats and other percussion techniques often detected in the realm of death metal. Here's my problem: name a time when these things weren't the spine of Vomitory's music. These Swedes have pillaged this town seven times before, so why go on the rampage again? "Opus Mortis VIII" is the same album released for the eighth time, and I quickly found myself bored after a few listens.
"Regorge in the Morgue" brings brawn to the initial source with a d-beat (old-school hardcore like Discharge) beating which still covers all of Vomitory's bases. "Bloodstained" makes the record somewhat bearable with a mid-speed riff ala "Tombs of the Mutilated" which turns down a jagged chamber of ravenous leads and frenzied blasting. "The Dead Awaken" is another killing spree worth mentioning, and "Forever Damned" sticks out a lot as well. The riffs and patterns from this point on evaporate into a nameless fog of brutality, however. Everything comes and goes like a scream unleashed at the volume of a mute whisper. I'd rather listen to this than a number of releases, but still, this is really vapid death metal at heart.
Barring the few mentionable moments that I enjoy, "Opus Mortis VIII" is totally skip-worthy. Vomitory has breached the musical threshold after years of committing the same murder ad nauseam, and now the band's identity suffers to a volatile degree because of this unreserved misuse of novice death metal, now losing its acceptable charm. You can mentally picture the meat and potatoes of "Opus Mortis VIII" without hearing it, and there's no reason to dive into something so foreseeable unless you know absolutely nothing regarding the basics of death metal. I guess pick this up if you enjoy the band; if not, get into their early albums instead of this uninspired routine.
Vomitory - Opus Mortis VIII
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