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Autopsy – Skull Crusher Award winner

Skull Crusher
by Mike Coyle at 14 December 2015, 10:23 AM

Whenever we think of gore or horror in the death metal scene we normally think of bands like CANNIBAL CORPSE or even GORE OBSESSED, but really the band that is responsible for these themes in Death Metal music is Oakland California’s own AUTOPSY!

Formed in 1987, AUTOPSY was conceived by Chris Reifert, previously of the band DEATH, Eric Cutler and Danny Coralles. Through these three members we saw the band release some of Death Metal’s most infamous records; these titles include “Severed Survival”, “Mental Funeral”, “Acts of the Unspeakable” and “Shitfun”.

Through the years since the band’s return we have seen AUTOPSY release three new studio records entitled “Macabre Eternal”, “The Headless Ritual” and 2014’s “Tourniquets, Hacksaws and Graves”. With the release of bands latest EP “Skull Crusher” we are given a taste of classic AUTOPSY at their best showing that there is still life living within this carcass.

Already from the start we see Autopsy go in strong with the EP's first track entitled “Strung Up and Hutted”. This song embodies the best of AUTOPSY's song-writing skills and much more showing an older style that has only become stronger as it has aged. When listening through this track we see a style that honestly defines what this band is in general showing the newer generation how it's done.

What we can see as far from this EP is that the band have gone deep into their roots and have created songs that fans new and old can appreciate as well as having heart and raw aggression within them. As we continue onwards we head into the title song, “Skull Grinder”; the song starts with a slow and mellow opening which builds towards the song and towards what can only really be described as a relentless force of aggressive music that holds a punch with each beat and slices with every riff. Really, this is a track that embodies what the EP is and with everything that it shows it is a track that crushes.

It is easy to see that AUTOPSY's music has evolved over the years in terms of the structure that they have added over the course of the bands career, but at the same time keeping the sound to its original state showing that even with time the band have been able to master their sound and bring something to the newer fans in terms of a band that helped to start off the scene and keep the spirit alive over the years. Without fail, this EP is a testament to this and much more as we go into the track “Sanity Bleeds”.

The start is evil, maniacal and honestly perfect, it builds on a malevolence making the listener almost stand on edge in anticipation of what is coming, though really this is just an introductory piece which keeps the listener invested in the moment, but even still has a very intimidating feel to it which works and keeps the listener curious which always works with intro songs such as this.

The EP holds different twists and turns keeping the listeners on edge for each track as each track in its own way holds something different every time giving fans new and old something to look forward to, but it does go without saying that this is meant for fans that want a heavier lesson in aggression and brutality and that is just what “Skull Crusher” provides and then some. Being a fan myself, this EP has been able to compile everything that I love about this band, the ideas and as well the emotion which each track brings. It shows us that AUTOPSY are still able to bring songs that structure around riffs and bass lines that hit hard and devastate with raw power.

5 Star Rating

Side A:
1. Strung up and gutted
2. Skull Grinder
3. Children of the Filth

Side B:
4. Sanity Bleeds
5. The Withering Death
6. Waiting for the Screams
7. Return of the Dead
Chris Reifert – Vocals, Drums
Eric Cutler – Vocals, Guitars
Danny Corralles – Guitars
Joe Allen – Bass
Record Label: Peaceville Records


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