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Disentomb - The Decaying Light

Disentomb
The Decaying Light
by Liam Easley at 06 June 2019, 2:14 PM

After five years, DISENTOMB finally have details on their next full-length, “The Decaying Light”. This time around, the band is taking on a more dissonant sound in addition to the brutality and technicality presented on their previous album, “Misery”. The band’s 2014 album is known as a modern classic in the realm of Brutal Death Metal, and it was exciting when the single, “Your Prayers Echo into Nothingness,” for their new album dropped. The song was nothing very special, in fact it was underwhelming because of its tamed pace and tone. There weren’t as many interesting hooks and riffs going on as there were on their previous album.

With time, the song became better and better, and I started to realize that, like this single, I had to listen to their 2014 album several times before fully appreciating it. However, there was another problem in mind: Knowing their style, how did they write a 44-minute album and keep it interesting? Unfortunately, this problem is never solved. While each track is technically proficient and shows plenty of interesting riffs, the length makes this album hard to digest. Forty-four minutes is not long for an album, but for Brutal Death Metal, especially in this nature, it can become tedious. The riffs begin to sound the same after a while, and multiple listens are required.

It does not help that the music sounds less animated than their previous album. It doesn’t sound as brutal anymore, in fact, it is clear that they are looking to go the more technical route with their music. While brutality is still present, everything seems tamed. “Centuries of Deluge” is a good example of this. While there is a good breakdown-like riff that is very heavy, the rest of the song is the same technical riffing style that the band keeps using for every song. After a while, this riffing style becomes lackluster.

On their 2014 album, the technical riffing was very snappy and rich. Each time the guitars made a technical advance, it was special and interesting. It seems like they have been building off of this style for this album, but they spread it too thin, causing the style to lose its special touch. It is no longer unique because it is now their style at every second. While it is a good style, it is no longer unpredictable.

One song that holds true to their previous album the most is “The Droning Monolith” because of its snappy, groovy middle section. This track has some of the best songwriting on the album because of its consistent flow and perfect progression. The solo is played over dissonant riffing, and the final product is very strong and infectious. “Rebirth Through Excoriation” also holds true to the previous album with its brutal riffing as well as one of the few slams on the album.

Outside of riffing and instrumentation, the production is interesting. While the pang-y snare drum on their previous albums will be missed, and the tone of the guitars sounds a bit dry, the bass guitar is very audible in the mix. Audible bass guitar is something that is very attractive because a lot of bands don’t have it, and this is definitely one of this album’s strong points. Outside of the audible bass, however, the dry guitar and the stale drums get in the way.

Along with instrumentation and production comes the structure of the album. This album has some songs on the duller end of things, so the need to spread out the better tracks is very present, and that is exactly what happened. The better songs are evenly spaced instead of being bunched in one area of the release, making it more efficient and easier to listen to despite the longer run-time.

Overall, the new DISENTOMB album is a lot less like PUTRIDITY or NEUROGENIC, and instead it walks in the shadow of WORMED: dissonant and technical but missing the slams that it once had so many of. The riffing style might be overused, but the reality is that the album would not be the same without it. The album has very strong songs amidst weaker tracks, but it is overall a good release due to its barbaric riffing style and perfect blend of technicality and dissonance.

Songwriting: 9
Originality: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 6


 

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Collapsing Skies
2. Your Prayers Echo into Nothingness
3. Indecipherable Sermons of Gloom
4. Undying Dysphoria
5. Centuries of Deluge
6. The Decaying Light
7. The Great Abandonment
8. Dredged into Existence
9. The Droning Monolith
10. Dismal Liturgies
11. Invocation in the Cathedral of Dust
12. Rebirth Through Excoriation
13. Withering
Lineup:
Henri Sison – Drums
Jake Wilkes – Guitars
Jordan James – Vocals
Adrian Cappalletti – Bass
Record Label: Unique Leader Records
     


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Edited 17 September 2019
 

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