Review Summary: So, why all the bashing and the controversy surrounding The Unspoken King? Simply because people are too narrow-minded or too afraid to explore this album because of the line-up changes and the unexpected experimentation.
Oh, how the mighty have fallen…
People have been complaining, simply put bashing Cryptopsy’s newest effort, The Unspoken King. Reasons are many; the most important one being the arrival of the new guy replacing Lord Worm, Matt McGachy. There is also the unpredictable stylistic shift that the band has taken on this one and the guitarist’s – Chris Donaldson – hair style, which reminds us of the overpopulated emo scene…
It shouldn’t be unknown to us. Cryptopsy have a legendary status as one of the leading Canadian death metal acts. From the horrifying Blasphemy Made Flesh and None So Vile, passing through the majestic Whisper Supremacy and the hyper-technical And Then You’ll Beg to the lacklustre comeback of Lord Worm – according to the critics – Once Was Not, these guys have seen it all with their constant line-up changes, but still remaining alive and well with their success through out the years.
So, why all the bashing and the controversy surrounding The Unspoken King? Having mentioned the reasons earlier, another one needs to be explored. People probably haven’t heard or wouldn’t listen to the record itself. Some are simply too afraid, too ashamed or even too ignorant to listen to it. Unfortunately, I was one of those before I heard the record. I did listen to some old Cryptopsy before and I wasn’t that much of a fan to tell you the truth. In fact, I don’t know a lot about Cryptopsy. But, I did listen to the new record a couple of times and it’s not that bad to be honest. Even though I respect other people’s choices, I read the comments, the reviews and the opinions on the Internet about it. Those who have written the comments and the reviews are either brainless or just closed-minded in my opinion.
Sure, Cryptopsy have changed a lot, and I mean, A LOT since the last records. They are no longer the reigning Canadian death metal band of the 90’s. This I agree with most of the enraged fans. Most would say that their music might sound like a Bring Me the Horizon rip-off. I can understand the deathcore resemblances, but it’s not an entire copycat. Songs like “Worship Your Demons” and “Anoint the Dead” still have that dreadful, merciless assault that Cryptopsy is known for. There is also the other side of the coin, the more experimental one. “Bemoan the Martyr” sounds like Chino Moreno playing over blast-beats, fierce kick drums and repetitive, almost soulless riffs with a small hint to industrial music, thanks to another new-born of Cryptopsy, keyboardist Maggy Durand. This pretty lady shows herself the most in “Contemplate Regicide”, a tribute to one of the snazziest musicians out there, Mike Patton accompanied by operatic adjustments and intriguing, almost chilling riffs from Alex Durand and Chris Donaldson. This song is also the most melodic of the album in my opinion. “The Headsmen” is also another old-school assault from the band, but with, yet again, a tiny hint at experimentation with slow tempos and hyper-audible bass lines. “Silence the Tyrants”, my personal favourite, is a good mixture of what Cryptopsy is trying to do on this album: brutality and experimentation. Speaking of which, the only thing I didn’t like on this record is the vocalist’s timing, especially on “Leash” and “The Plagued”. The clean singing doesn’t complement itself at all with Cryptopsy’s known ferocity and technicality, except maybe on “Bemoan the Martyr” and “Bound Dead”, a song introducing a newer side of Cryptopsy, a calmer one near the end with the angelic crooning of McGachy and the more alternative, melodic influences which demonstrate themselves as well. Leaving that aside, the plus side on this album comes from Flo Mounier. I did hear him on the last records, but he still kicks ass, even more than before in my opinion. Sure, he slows down the tempos and his brutality on some songs because of the experimentation. Nevertheless, he is still as swift as ever.
In other words, for those who have not heard, and probably will never hear the album for pathetic reasons, stop complaining and do something else for a change. The Unspoken King might be a new statement from Cryptopsy for the old fans, as well as the newer ones: back off if you don’t like us. This is the most “metal” thing to do in my opinion. Evolving might lose some fans in the long run. But, it’s worth it. Cryptopsy have moved on. Most of us have as well. But, they are still here, aren’t they???
Note : 3.5/5
Standout tracks : Worship Your Demons, Silence the Tyrants, Bemoan the Martyr, Anoint the Dead and Bound Dead