Death
Human


4.5
superb

Review

by Brendan Schroer STAFF
January 13th, 2010 | 521 replies | 18,183 views


Release Date: 1991 | Tracklist

Review Summary: One of the ultimate albums in prog/tech/death, let alone death metal in general.

It's very confusing to see how bands like Cannibal Corpse were influenced by this band at all. The seminal death metal project, founded by the legendary Chuck Schuldiner, may have pioneered the genre and pushed it to the limits of exploration, but what is truly worth mention here is the fact that they're just so different from their contemporaries. In fact, one of the songs on this album, Secret Face, describes this album perfectly. It looks like an ordinary death metal album, skulls, skeletons, and all. However, it is insanely technical, progressive, and rewarding; it just takes time to unravel completely.

What's also surprising is the fact that while this album is aggressive, it slows down for softer, milder sections, such as the beginning of Lack of Comprehension and the majority of the great instrumental Cosmic Sea. The former begins with a nice acoustic section, but starts having the heavy edge that is normal to Death. The latter is interesting, though; it is extremely atmospheric, yet so powerful. It has an opening solo by Schuldiner and Paul Masvidal, but the truly eyebrow-raising moment is when Steve DiGiorgio(the band's bassist) solos after a synth-heavy section.

The band doesn't abandon their heavy side, though; they actually create a great balance here, basically having the characteristics of Leprosy and/or Spiritual Healing but with more maturity and better songwriting. More aggression is brought out with Together as One, See Through Dreams, and Vacant Planets. Together as One opens extremely strong, with a powerful riff, but the technicality never lets up, instead opting for a more balanced approach. Vacant Planets, meanwhile, is amazing, beginning with a 3/4 verse, and maintaining a progressive level while having a cooled down one as well. See Through Dreams takes the word "technical" to a new level, though. The chorus is pretty intense, but just as melodic.

What will be mentioned, though, are some issues. The first one is the brevity. This album clocks in at only 34+ minutes, with little slowdown in the music. The speed and length can remind one of Reign in Blood by Slayer, but some might not be very happy about the length overall. The other problem is that this album, as was already told, is a bit too much for casual listening, but you might not really care if you are at least a moderate death metal fan.

Who cares about those little gripes, though, when the music is this good? This album definitely stands toe-to-toe with Atheist's "Unquestionable Presence" and Cynic's "Focus", if not even further. It's an extremely progressive release that challenges the listener with unusual rhythms and technical riffs. This is an extremely rewarding release.



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user ratings (1924)
Chart.
4.4
superb
other reviews of this album
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Comments:Add a Comment 
KILL
January 13th 2010



67117 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

np but ur rating is so wrong

TheSpirit
January 13th 2010



16662 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

he's kidding

Digging: Sexdrome - Grown Younger

ikarus
January 14th 2010



559 Comments


think you need to explain what exactly makes this album "technical" and "progressive" as i have no idea what this sounds like after reading your review

IRAI
January 14th 2010



1567 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

My favorite Death album.

i think Masvidal and Reinert's inclusion in this pushes it above the others for some reason.

and Chuck doesnt disappoint at all on here either.

i headbang the whole way through this one.

top-notch stuff.


bloc
January 14th 2010



34499 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Mewcopa, the first one, i believe.

Digging: He Is Legend - I Am Hollywood

TheSpirit
January 14th 2010



16662 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Its called death metal because of a compilation released in the 80's featuring many proto-death metal bands such as Kreator, Sodom, Possessed etc...

Greggers
January 14th 2010



2375 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Great review of a classic album

Nagrarok
January 14th 2010



7957 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Album is short but very sweet.

Thor
January 14th 2010



10158 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

This album definitely stands toe-to-toe with Atheist's "Unquestionable Presence" and Cynic's "Focus", if not even further.

It's a little better than Unquestionable Presence and just a little bit beneath Focus if you ask me

Digging: Cult Leader - Nothing For Us Here

KILL
January 14th 2010



67117 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

all are amazing but this is the best coz its death

Motiv3
January 14th 2010



8421 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

It's a little better than Unquestionable Presence and just a little bit beneath Focus if you ask me

Put this a lil behind UP and put focus way down and then yeah, you're right.

KILL
January 14th 2010



67117 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

what r u doing

AliW1993
Contributing Reviewer
January 14th 2010



7237 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

good review. this is the only death album i have but i like it a lot.

KILL
January 14th 2010



67117 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

get symbolic!

AliW1993
Contributing Reviewer
January 14th 2010



7237 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

its on my to get list dont worry, along with all their other albums

Nagrarok
January 14th 2010



7957 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Get Symbolic first, it's the best. While I'm at it:

Symbolic > Human > Sound of Perseverance > ITP > Leprosy > Spiritual Healing > SBG

Rugter32
January 14th 2010



754 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

awesome album is awesome. Symbolic is better, but this is win and awesome

Motiv3
January 14th 2010



8421 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Symbolic is indeed awesome, better than this album.

landonius
January 14th 2010



70 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Flattening of Emotions was the first song i ever heard by Death.

made me jizz myself.

KILL
January 14th 2010



67117 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

k dont like u anymore



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