Suffocation – Pinnacle Of Bedlam

What is there left to be said about Suffocation? Immense influence on the entire brutal Death metal genre releasing genre classics such as “Effigy Of The Forgotten” (1991), Breeding The Spawn (1993) and “Pierced From Within” (1995). Ask major bands such as Deeds Of Flesh, Inveracity or Dying Fetus how much they love them. This band is responsible for the addition of grindcore elements in Death metal creating the sound of tomorrow. Even though they went through split-ups and Mike Smith leaving 3 times, Suffocation have walked through fire and come up strong with consistent records.

This time Mike Smith is out of Suffocation for the 3rd time and Dave Culross of Malevolent Creation fame is here to replace him. “Pinnacle Of Bedlam” starts with “Cycle Of Suffering” blasting in the beginning followed by a great solo then grooving in the trademark Suffocation style. The band sounds in really good shape. “Purgatorial Punishment” comes in with groovy riffing rapidly shifting to mid tempo then to Thrashing tempo and back again to the groove including great soloing. “Eminent Wrath” comes in with a great solo Thrashing and blasting in the beginning then back to the groove. It’s mainly a fast song with some groovy parts. “As Grace Descends” (also the first video off this album) comes ripping with blasting and Thrash tempo and an Exodus-influenced riff in the beginning then breaks into a groovy part with an amazing solo (yes the guitar work is exceptional).

Sullen Days” begins with an beautiful acoustic intro which is unlike Suffocation, then moving on to a kick ass groovy riff and some great technical drumming by Culross and of course blasting and thrashing until the end where we have that intro fading out. The title track comes in blasting then vicious Thrashing broken by another top notch solo making the perfect contrast in the song. “My Demise” coming up next is a blasting track filled with groovy and thrash parts and some more great soloing. Next we have “Inversion” a more blasting track with some groovy parts trademark for Suffocation. The next track is the groovier “Rapture Of Revocation” including some blastbeats and fading out with a great groovy riff. The final track is a re-recording of the song “Beginning Of Sorrow” off the “Breeding The Spawn” album, a blasting track all the way with its Thrashing and grooving parts, classic Suffocation. The only downside of this album are the kind of buried in the mix vocals of Mullen.

Suffocation have delivered this year with a really good Death metal album that may not be as innovative as their early work, yet it still lives up to their legacy.

Track List Line Up
01. Cycles of Suffering
02. Purgatorial Punishment
03. Eminent Wrath
04. As Grace Descends
05. Sullen Days
06. Pinnacle of Bedlam
07. My Demise
08. Inversion
09. Rapture of Revocation
10. Beginning of Sorrow (re-recorded version)
Frank Mullen – vocals
Terrance Hobbs – lead guitar
Guy Marchais – guitars
Derek Boyer – bass guitar
Dave Culross – drums

 

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