Thursday, 13 March 2014

AUTOPSY - Tourniquets, Hacksaws and Graves - Album Review

Album Type : Full Length
Date Released : 29/4/2014
Label : Peaceville Records

Tourniquets, Hacksaws and Graves, album track listing :

1). Savagery
2). King of Flesh Ripped
3). Tourniquets, Hacksaws and Graves
4). The Howling Dead
5). After The Cutting
6). Forever Hungry
7). Teeth of the Shadow Horde
8). All Shall Bleed
9). Deep Crimson Dreaming
10). Parasitic Eye
11). Burial
12). Eye

The Band :

Chris Reifert | Drums/Vocals
Danny Coralles | Guitar
Eric Cutler | Guitar
Joe Trevisano | Bass

Review :

One year on from “The Headless Ritual” Autopsy confirm themselves to be at the top of the death metal reunion pack by roaring back with another full length album. Down to business, then. This record is a sharp and pointed tale of shock and gore. Savagery sets out the band's stall in two and a half brutal and feral minutes. The sound is very live and old school- raw, too. The band sound very much alive and raging as they tear out of your speakers. Cranked up on a home stereo, the effect is adrenaline inducing. My Saturday morning was very metal indeed.

King of Flesh is a slower proposition- all death doom atmospherics and dynamics. The title track starts mournfully and then ramps up the pace to thrash tempos. Interestingly, Autopsy are unusual in the DM world these days- they don't rely on blasts the whole (or even much of the) time, but still sound much more vicious than most. Just as Martin Van Drunen proclaimed “This is real death metal you bastards...” on Asphyx's excellent “Deathhammer” opus, the same could be growled of this release. Not warp speed, not overly tech-obsessed- but instead out of control in the way that death metal was always supposed to be. Nasty, tetanus inducing vibes abound as the band utilise doom tempos, solos, fast bits and some inhuman vocals to conjure up the image of being imprisoned in a basement very accurately.

The Howling Dead is again slow and creeping with some interesting rhythms thrown in for good measure. After The Cutting puts the (rusty) pedal to the metal and ups the tempo as the band again sounds live and dangerous. An interestingly swinging groove section follows, and is again replaced by quicker fare and a nifty drum fill. Forever Hungry takes us to the halfway point with punky pace and approach- again showing the uniqueness of Autopsy in the often homogeneous world of DM. Teeth of The Shadow Horde (not listed as a CD track on Amazon?) is quick-ish but at that tempo that will make you nod your head in time with the snare; no Nile-isms here. All Shall Bleed provides a funereal intermission before Deep Crimson Dreaming builds up over squalls of feedback to... a surprisingly quiet and chilling opening! This doesn't last though, as the band steps up the heaviness. The opening refrain is returned to, with great effect.

Parasitic Eye is doomy and atmospheric, again making use of Autopsy's unique approach to their niche genre, before exhibiting a very aggressive streak that ups the ante of intensity and speed on the album. Burial is very slow to start- the doom tempo is right down there with the best of them. While the band's theme song, Autopsy, demonstrates what is so unusual about this classic and original death metal beast.

That Autopsy are releasing material of high quality at such a rate says a great deal about their motivation and confidence at this stage in the game. Get on board and enjoy before it is too late- successful streaks don't come along in a band's career to often, let alone across nearly all their output. 2013 was Autopsy's year. 2014 is too.

Words by : Richard Maw

You can preorder / buy here

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