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TDM Staff review: Cattle Decapitation – Monolith of Inhumanity

cattle-decapitation-monolith-of-inhumanityCATTLE DECAPITATION
Monolith of Inhumanity (2012)

United States, Metal Blade Records, Technical Deathgrind

“Well, You Have This Carnivore’s Attention.”

HOLY SANTA CLAUS SHIT.

I think it’s safe to say ‘Monolith Of Inhumanity’ is already one of the best deathgrind CDs I’ve ever heard. Hell, if I didn’t say that there would be something wrong with my ears. Punishingly brutal, savagely intense and yet, poignant. Melodic. Choruses that remind me of Devin Townsend.

This album is easily Cattle Decapitation’s very best. I admit to having a greater affinity for later Cattle Decapitation albums but I don’t see how even rabid fans of their old work could deny that fact. Everything that has made Cattle Decapitation into deathgrind virtuosos succeeds like never before. Travis Ryan is a monster. The sheer range and power on display here breaks any/all records. The music itself has topped every previous outing technically, brutally and (thankfully) compositionally. Old Cattle Decapitation is perfectly brutal but the cohesiveness of this record makes ‘Human Jerky’/‘Homovore’ look amateurish in comparison. This is the real deal; listen to this album at your own risk. It will undoubtedly kick your ass.

The only way a better deathgrind album could be made after this is if Travis Ryan, Pete Chavez & Nick Liuzzi of Slaughterbox and Josh Elmore formed a vegan deathgrind supergroup.

10/10 – Goshuggist

“Misanthropy and Sickness Prevail”

Cattle Decapitation has always had some of the sickest gurgles in the west. Travis Ryan’s “100% organic” vocals have been absolutely inhuman, hitting everything but clean vocals – until now.

The single word review for Monolith of Inhumanity is variety. These (human) skin-shredding vegans deliver a delightfully disgusting package that wraps up all the best parts of the various sub-sub genres of death metal.  “Carbon Stampede” sprints with the frantic beat of deathgrind; “Dead Set on Suicide” swings the sledgehammer of brutal death metal; “Do Not Resuscitate” dives and marches with the dynamics of Aborted gore metal; “Projectile Ovulation” slings math licks worthy of technical death; and “Gristle Licker” even has some harmonies worthy of progressive death.  Don’t mistake this variety for a lack of heaviness – Monolith hits with skull-smashing riffs and coroner-crawls aplenty.

And of course what everyone is talking about. Clean vocals…in only the way Cattle Decapitation could do them – vile, infected, and oozing.  Check out “Your Disposal” for a taste of the plague.  The only thing that holds the album back for me is the slower pace of the last two tracks. Aside from those, Monolith of Inhumanity is perfect. Perfectly putrid, that is.

9/10 – Witness to the Void

“A Living, Brutal Piece of Crushing Death Metal”

I first discovered Cattle Decapitation when I was first getting into death metal, around the time that “The Harvest Floor” had been released for a few months. The first thing that really struck me was Travis Ryan’s vocals. They were unique, and despite not being extremely low (how I normally like vocals to be) and occasionally delving into hardcore territory in some of the shouts, they had a brilliant timbre and fit perfectly with the insanity that the songs emulated. On this album, he even has some clean parts, noticeably on the song “A Living, Breathing Piece of Defecating Meat”.

One thing I can’t say I’m fond of with this release is the fuck-up with the volumes. I don’t know whether or not it was intentional to let the drums overtly cover up the strings with a wall of blast beats, but it’s certainly inconvenient when I’m trying to prove to someone that death metal isn’t tuneless music that’s always about senseless gore. The vegetarian/”Kill ALL the humans!” theme is still there, but at some points, all that the untrained ear can notice is noise, even more so than usual. It’s still a brilliant album, regardless.

8/10 – InexorableRotting

“A funeral of modern tech death!”

Ouch! This is some heavy, fuckin’ manifestation of death metal absolute! This reminds me a giant octopus vomiting upon the humans who dive into black waters by accident. My ears were bleeding after the first, tenth and five hundred session with this, arguably most technical release of 2012! Cattle Decapitation is an irresistible force in all manner of emancipating, destructive form. This piece of music is uber-fast and progressive like a stomach flu. No, really! This is progressive as hell! The drumming is insane. Those are most aggressive and intuitive patters that I heard in a long time. You feel like a beaten by a baseball bat. Shit, this thing is massive! There is 600 beats per minute and it doesn’t end well for You. Try not to spin Your head in circles, ha! Another piece of art are the vocals. Despite the epic, brutal growl – You should enjoy the little higher and very dynamic, shrieks. Maybe more black metal alike but woohoo… those will damage You for sure.  Adds priceless variety to a such high-end specialized music. Guitars are endless passages of ephemeral melodies closed in a virtuous manner. Exquisite technique is manifested in every second of this release. “Monolith Of Inhumanity” is most extreme, intense technical death metal album to date. I love every single note in here. Perfection in service of tech death. A must have!

10/10 – Rimmon

AVERAGE RATING: 9.25/10

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