Cephalic Carnage
Xenosapien


3.5
great

Review

by Kalle J. USER (37 Reviews)
June 16th, 2007 | 52 replies | 11,046 views


Release Date: 2007 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Three cheers for cohesion.

3 of 3 thought this review was well written

If you had asked me what I thought of Cephalic Carnage's 5th studio outing Xenosapien after I had gave it a first spin, I would have replied something along the lines of "Not now, I have a headache." Indeed it wouldn't be an understatement to say that this album has the power to make first-timers say,"what the heck just hit me?", those that are bound to sink in. Already, it's safe to say that an inhuman attempt and an idiosyncrasy to comply with rhythm will have the most of you. With a generally savage hubub of speed and just death-influenced grind in former releases, Cephalic Carnage have now actually managed to write an album, no gimmickry attached, while shifting over the weight to a stable grind-influenced death metal. You can't come out of this technical rollercoaster without feeling the physical repercussion; this is a technically poignant album -maybe not one of the most skillfully contrived albums we've seen from the American troupe yet. Moreover, there are many subliminal benefits one will get from delving headstrong into this album.

It's all for the kids. Opener Endless Cycle of Violence quite clearly pleads of the impact that media has on teenagers, and how sandbox toddlers are in for a meander through patterns of aggression as they grow into adolescents. Even such crummy lyrics succeed in holding up a cheval glass to the smutty 21st century life, while regardless, proficiency on all ends ultimately makes you think, "so what?" With consistency, Xenosapien righteously applies repetition and varied groundwork to give a more memorable delivery through out each song; something which lacked in predecessors. The intro to Divination & Violation would have had me confused with a PsyOpus track, and a Mastadon melodic break is featured on Touched by an Angel bearing testament that Cephalic Carnage has always had the breeze to outdo many contenders on the scene. That said, the argument only skims the surface.

Second-guessing emerges, considering that Deathgrind never was the most coherent thing on the metal scene. Already, it's an instilled fact that Cephalic Carnage's music is built around pretty many cliches, but what makes them one of the most intense acts since god knows when is their blend of death metal, grindcore, sludge, doom and even jazz. John Merryman's drums are breath taking, with meticulous timing, and ingenius drum fills and rolls, whilst Lenzig Leal's vocals range from guttural Death Metal roars to well-placed grindcore shouts. He's most definitely not the best vocalist I've ever heard, but he gets the job done. Despite such praise, the music itself seems very self-contented in tone; at this point we're still fine, but then we're lead to the kicker. Have they done it well enough? - one of the many questions that haunts me as I review this album. The band will most likely chug down a death metal bit, taking The Omega Point and then mooch an unacquainted experimental snippet. Not that this shows true artistic qualities, I believe what I'm saying is that it's not all that well infused, and when it's repeated to death for its satisfaction, exit: killer melody.

This album was well anticipated for 2007, and I will concede that even though this isn't a very accessible album, fans of the genre, let alone the bands will be very contented. The troupe have themself fasioned a name for their style, Rocky Mountain HydroGrind. Since much of their lyrical content covers the legalization of weed, contemporary issues etc. Rocky Mountain symbolizes, or rather gives its soil to the growth of Mary Jane. "With Xenosapien we tried to play on the whole genetic side of things from an evolutionary standpoint and we tried to connect it to the alien theme, which is something that I think will pop up in society very soon." says the band's new bassist Nick Schendzielos. The album focuses on the inevitable speculation of any pre-teen comic nerd: do extraterrestrials exist?

Even with such givens, only time will be able to bring more. Xenosapien does not knocks-out former releases, such as 2003 Lucid Interval, or even Anomalies of 2005. Cephalic Carnage is one of the craziest Deathgrind bands to emerge from America, and yet they are able to tame some of the wildest elements to be found into and blow sentiment into them in the form of a song. "Bands have seemingly explored every angle of 'angular,' every crevice of 'chaotic,' every possible permutation of 'brutal'." Cephalic Carnage may be guilty of this, but they still bring a clash of brutality, intensity and speed to the table which they can actually be given credit for. Be it mature and maybe one of the technically best of its genre this year, the album is one of the few that coheres to make a more memorable album, yet Death and Grind are two terms which must share a mutual bond, and Cephalic Carnage still have to give all they have from both ends.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
kalkal50
June 16th 2007



2386 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

wtf why is this in the punk section?

could a mod please move this, even though this is partly grind, its mostly death metal

Confessed2005
June 16th 2007



3314 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yes I agree with Kalkal, this is more metal than grind.

I have only heard the single (which I thought was quite good) but I expect Anomalies is actually better than this.

Good review though.

BallsToTheWall
June 16th 2007



44164 Comments


love these guys

kalkal50
June 16th 2007



2386 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

yay thanks mods, these are guys are really good, but i cant really decide whether i like anomalies more.. this one is kind of more boring

Tyler
Emeritus
June 16th 2007



7924 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

It was under Grind because Cephalic Carnage are primarily a Grind band. This album, not so much. But still, they're a Death/GRind band. I hope you didnt have them remove the Grind

kalkal50
June 16th 2007



2386 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

no i put grind under secondary genre :s, This Message Edited On 06.16.07

Tyler
Emeritus
June 16th 2007



7924 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Okay as long as it's still there. This album is pretty average. Their others trump it with suuuuuuuch ease.

Mastadon

Mastodon***This Message Edited On 06.16.07

MeowMeow
June 16th 2007



662 Comments


Not as strong as their last album.

Tyler
Emeritus
June 16th 2007



7924 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Have you heard Lucid Interval? I think I like that more than Anomalies, even if it's more straight forward.
I can't wait to see these guys with BTBAM and Red Chord in July.

kalkal50
June 16th 2007



2386 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

No but ill listen in. I don't get why so many people said this album was better than anomalies, probably just publicity.

Tyler
Emeritus
June 16th 2007



7924 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I don't think any real fans of the band think that. This is pretty forgettable, I had no urge to listen to it once I did for the first time. It's not to say it isn't good or anything, but it can't come close to LI.

kalkal50
June 16th 2007



2386 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

It was just in all the interviews I read and the more pro reviews where everyone kept saying that. I agree you really have to want to listen to this album to feel it, and its hard but now i have a certain mindset. This Message Edited On 06.16.07

Wizard
June 16th 2007



18755 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Great review. This album is definitely a step up in the right direction compared to LI and Anomalies. I can't really say Ive been a fan of these guys before this album.

Digging: Triptykon - Melana Chasmata

Shattered_Future
June 16th 2007



1539 Comments


I liked this one a lot more at first, but after going back and listening to Anomalies again (I haven't heard the first), Anomalies is much better.

This one still has its moments. It's endlessly fun to drive 65 and blast Endless Cycle Of Violence at full volume. Pity my parents are being too bitchy to let me go see them in a couple of weeks.

Tyler
Emeritus
June 16th 2007



7924 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

There will be so much pot at their show it's ridiculous.

Wizard
June 16th 2007



18755 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I saw these guys when they came to London, Ontario a few years ago. When they went on stage, you couldn't even see them through the haze of pot smoke!

Tyler
Emeritus
June 16th 2007



7924 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Yeah, I'm seeing them in Hamilton. HAMILTON. It will be sketchy and fun.

Wizard
June 16th 2007



18755 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Hamilton is the sketchiest town!

Tyler
Emeritus
June 16th 2007



7924 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Yeah but there's no Toronto date.

kalkal50
June 17th 2007



2386 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

:O You're allowed to smoke pot at their concerts. Sketchy...



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