Carnifex is seeming to be one of the front runners of the “deathcore” scene as of late. What is deathcore? Well, in todays world of genre fusion, there is a special place for attempts at being the “br00talist” band out there. So why not take the machine-gun blast beat drums and guttural vocals of death metal and slap a big fat hardcore breakdown at 1/4 of the original tempo (probably around 2bpm at that) to create chaos of a nuclear level. That is deathcore.
Carnifex‘s Until I Feel Nothing is a bloody fucking staple in the forehead of deathcore. Its opener, Deathwish, cuts right to the point delivering a big-ass breakdown that less than subtly leads into We Spoke of Lies. There is no diversity in this album. At least from what I can tell, though I don’t have a keen ear for death genre’s. Though some songs like Creation Defaced and the title track Until I Feel Nothing have some softer, non distorted breaks. Naturally, they have to bust the door back in with an explosion of drums and severely down-tuned guitars.
The whole album to me, comes together as one big piece of excessive attempts at being brutal. They surely can live up to what they put out, but the fact that the only apparent emotion throughout the album is “fucking hostile” doesn’t sit well with me. It merely does the same thing for EVERY track. No diversity or mixing it up. Cut and dry deathcore.
I am in no way doubting their musicianship. I, as a guitarist, could not be able to play 90% of their material. They are a cohesive unit as a band. Everything is synchronized and on time. Drummer Shawn Cameron couldn’t have missed a beat even on the 32nd note kicks and blast beats. Guitarists Ryan Gudmunds and Cory Arford bring the pain and technicality with their ability to keep up with Cameron’s drums. Fred Calderon on bass brings that low iron and steel backbone that supports Carnifex‘s heavy exterior. Finally, rounding out this quintet of death, we have Scott Lewis on main growls, I mean vocals. He delivers his piercing highs and throaty lows that serve this genre well.
As for production, it is what it is. Loud and fucking in your face. Producer Tim Lambesis (Front man of As I Lay Dying) knew exactly what Carnifex is about and he sure brought out all the audible blood and gore that they could get from them.
As I said before, this whole genre doesn’t set well with me. Don’t get me wrong, I love some decently heavy music. I take appreciation in bands that bring you the heaviest material they can throw you. But what really makes them credible, sensible, and enjoyable the ability to take a break. Let a note ring out for a little bit, incorporate some clean guitar and make something melodically pleasing, not just rhythmically technical.
Wise words were once said that: “One of the most important notes in music is the rest”. Well, my college professor said that, and I couldn’t agree with him more. In your face is awesome, but a whole album of in your face is is bound to butt some heads and cause headaches, which is what I have now. Until I Feel Nothing isn’t just the album name, it is merely foreshadowing the feelings of the listener after hearing such work. This is one of the few albums that induced some fatigue on me.
I need some advil.
Until I Feel Nothing – 5.5/10
2. We Spoke of Lies
3. A Grave to Blame
4. Dead But Dreaming
5. Creation Defaced
7. Never Forgive Me
8. Until I Feel Nothing
9. Wretched Entropy
10. Curse My Name
Favorite Song: Deathwish (It was the simplest and shortest)
Until I Feel Nothing is available now via Victory Records