Dying Fetus - Reign Supreme Review
by Matt Hensch
Dying Fetus needs no introduction. Chances are you, oh valued reader, have stumbled upon these revolutionary death metal maniacs during your many travels into the twisted realm of death metal. I really wasn't enthusiastic about John Gallagher and crew after feeling "War of Attrition" and "Descend into Depravity" were deficient of Dying Fetus' usual goodness and just directionless albums, proving nothing and contributing very little. However, I am very impressed with "Reign Supreme," probably because it feels like the mechanical kinks between the aforementioned releases are vastly improved, and pretty much every angle of the band's assault is sinisterly excellent. Hearing the technical storm of Gallagher's guitar work and Trey Williams' chaotic percussion leading into the malevolent "Invert the Idols" tastes like any Dying Fetus offering should: completely violent and beyond brutal.
With the friction between the amount of brutality always poured into Dying Fetus' work and the band's ability to remain individualistic, one could kindly assume little has changed between releases, but that doesn't matter, because "Reign Supreme" leaves much more of an impact than I could of expected. Sure, you get the trademark outputs of Dying Fetus-esque goodness: guttural belches, higher growls from Sean Beasley, unspeakable acts committed on a drumset, shearing grooves, bloodthirsty sections of sonic fire, and Gallagher's menacing riffs and usual guitar desecration. The difference, though, is that the whole musical package stays addictive and never loses its initial punch through all nine tracks. Hell, it even seems like Dying Fetus is challenging themselves to become a better battalion on every possible level.
A lot of folks seem to be talking about the taped snippet of a careless young women talking about her thrilling pregnancy at the start of "From Womb to Waste," but I'm more concerned with the collection of inspiring riffs it vehemently displays without apology; one of the fast breaks can snap fingers like twigs, no joke. The puissant rampage throughout "In the Trenches" reeks like a classic Dying Fetus tune, exploiting all the savage meat which made this band so great in the first place. As previously mentioned, the quick snap of technical madness on "Invert the Idols" sets the stage for the impending onslaught perfectly. These are the exceptional pieces, but it's all part of a bigger machine that Dying Fetus has mastered here, definitely worthy of its throne of bones and blood.
Hearing a record like "Reign Supreme" sounds like famine itself is shrouding the universe in destruction; it's completely frantic and a tornado of instrumentation lurks around every corner. Still, this is the work of just three dudes. Amazing how much audio doom can come from just a trio considering some groups use six members or more. John Gallagher and the Dying Fetuses are at the top of the death metal hill they helped create with the dazzling showmanship and life oozing out of "Reign Supreme," and it may not be ridiculous to call it one of the group's finest releases. Newcomers will enjoy, old fans will rejoice, and the weak will submit to its feral grip on throats everywhere.
Dying Fetus - Reign Supreme
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