After almost a 30 year career one thing I love about Obituary is that they are consistent. With their upcoming 10th studio album coming out March 17th on Relapse Records simply entitled “Obituary” I knew what to expect from these Floridian Death Metal Masters, and I was not disappointed.
The Tardy brothers John and Donald have been doing this long enough on a high level where they know exactly the perfect formula for great old school Death Metal. From the first time I heard their debut album “Slowly We Rot” I was hooked, and this new album is almost a throw back in my opinion with some new twists. The record has a little bit of everything that is Obituary, and that’s a good thing, like I said consistency. It was hard to pick some favorites to write about with so much great material on the album but here are some that really stood out to me.
Track one is entitled “Brave” and it is one hell of a way to start an album. It comes out swinging at a furious pace with that traditional low end sound that has made Obituary a staple of the Death Metal scene for years. The two things that stood out the most on this song was Donald Tardy is a beast on drums and as smooth as ever. The other thing that was really pleasing to hear was a really sweet guitar solo that was well blended into the mix. “Brave” was a great choice to open this album up with because I believe it sets the tone for this new record.
Jumping ahead to track four “End It Now” which might be my favorite track on this new record. This track kicks you right in the face from the start with a double bass drum explosion. Then around the 45 second mark is where I got hooked on this particular tune, the fast pace that was the start of this tune turns super heavy and groovy with Johns growl layered perfectly over the music. The last part of the song ends as it began, fast, groovy and also with a quick but neat little guitar solo. For me, this song embodies all that is Obituary.
Track six is called “It Lives” and could have been part of any classic Obituary album like “The End Complete” or “Slowly We Rot”; it is that good. It’s relentless, heavy, and dark. Some people like their Death Metal full of blast beats or what seems to be the driving equivalent of doing 150mph. This is a slower but yet steady example of how heavy and relevant Obituary still is. “It Lives” is a real neck breaker for the true headbangers and Obituary fans. That classic long drawn out John Tardy growl is alive and well my friends, and that’s a great thing.
Obituary’s self titled album is solid from front to back with plenty of material for all true Death Metal fans or even the casual Metal fan. I truly can’t help but be impressed that John and Donald sound as good to me today as they did 25+ years ago when I first heard them and seen them live. The guys from Tampa Florida have not lost a step over their long career and the world is a better place for it. If you have never seen Obituary live now is your chance, get out and buy a tickets and go see them on tour this month with Kreator and pick up the new record on March 17th entitled “Obituary” A must have for any true Metal fan.
Gene A. Gaona
Lineup: John Tardy – vocals