Obituary
The End Complete


4.0
excellent

Review

by jk2two USER (15 Reviews)
October 4th, 2010 | 52 replies


Release Date: 1992 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The 3rd album from one of Florida's best is a transition from raw savagery to traditional song writing which may polarize the Obituary fan base.

Obituary's third album, The End Complete is certain to divide camps among old school Obituary fans. It is arguably their most commercially successful release, their most instantly accessible, and the first album to feature full lyrics for each song. After the underground success of Cause of Death, Obituary returned with original guitarist Allen West replacing Cause's James Murphy at the lead guitar. By 1992, the band had firmly established themselves as one of Florida's most seminal among Morbid Angel, Deicide, and Death. They had also managed to carve a fairly distinct sound for themselves which presents them as instantly recognizable among their peers thanks to two factors: the guitars with tone knobs turned all the way to bass and John Tardy's ridiculously over-the-top voice which sounds like he's vomiting each syllable.

The other key component was Obituary's lack of traditional song structure which changes drastically on The End Complete. At the very opening notes of "I'm in Pain," it is clear that Obituary has refined to verse-chorus-verse song structure along with straightforward and somewhat boring lyrical content. Tardy's voice is also somewhat affected by being preoccupied with enunciation rather than just making ghoulish noises. Thus the polarizing factor is this: do you think the refinement of song structure and the addition of conventional lyrics help or hurt the band?

"I'm in Pain" will likely do little to sway anyone either way, but "Back to One" is decidedly savage and full of new found energy. And though Obituary could hardly be placed among the fastest of OSDM bands, they are certainly one of the most adept at hanging a slow groove, which they obviously became acutely aware of on this album. "Back to One" starts with a punk-like charge which eventually settles into a 6/8 chug that truly highlights what is so great about this band. They also have a tendency to just sit back and jam on a riff, without vocals or leads, until the song comes to its natural end - few other OSDM acts were so patient in their approach. Halting breakdowns and tempo changes throughout show that Obituary had a firm grasp on their appeal. The riffs are among some of the best in the bands catalogue here and Allen West's leads easily outdo anything he did on Slowly We Rot. John Tardy also delivers, as one expects, with doubled up vocals and savage force. Yes the actual lyrics do change his dynamic, but the jarring change lets up after the opening track.

Towards the latter half of The End Complete, Obituary really seems to find their niche. After the somewhat forgettable "In the End of Life," "Sickness" announces the albums second side which all but erases side one. Atypical for most releases, the best tracks on here lie towards the end. The absolutely groovy "Killing Time" may just be one of the band's tracks that they ever wrote. This along with the album's single and title track is the most endearing moment of this release.

The production is adequate, though a paper-thin and overly compressed snare plagues Donald Tardy's machine-like performance. That guitar sound may also be wearing a little thin, as the heightened production values elsewhere really show how weak a sound it truly is.

Production flaws aside though, The End Complete made a strong statement for Obituary's place in OSDM history. This is what a third album truly should be: a combination of the rawness of #1 and the compromises of #2 which creates a logical step forward in musical maturity and artistic progression. The follow up to this would be a rather hard pill to swallow, so this may just be the band's true peak as a death metal giant. Being one of the founding fathers of death metal, it's good to see the boys are back to writing traditional DM, some 18 years after this release... Man, that makes me feel old!



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user ratings (234)
Chart.
3.9
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
jk2two
October 4th 2010


105 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I was floored no one had reviewed this yet, so I had no choice.

ShadowRemains
October 4th 2010


21616 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

never been the biggest fan of obituary, tbh

good review though

jk2two
October 4th 2010


105 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Then you'd probably like this one - it falls into line with the first two for the most part - steer clear of World Demise though... that one is disappointing.

foreverendeared
October 4th 2010


14678 Comments


these guys have written some of the sickest fucking riffs in metal

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
October 5th 2010


6339 Comments


Production flaws aside though

Leave production flaws aside, (a possible alternative phrase)


other than that, good review.

i don't have anything from these guys, although i listened to Cause of Death at a party when i was 11 or something lol

Digging: Madred - Supersonic Brainfuck Overdrive

KILL
October 5th 2010


72280 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

album rules so hard nice review

Digging: Throwing Muses - Throwing Muses

Asiatic667
October 5th 2010


4648 Comments


Was mildly interested in trying these guys, recently. I've only heard some Cause Of Death tracks so far, and I think Slowly We Rot

Terrifyer
October 5th 2010


3403 Comments


overrated band

ffs
October 5th 2010


4884 Comments


old school

foreverendeared
October 5th 2010


14678 Comments


not overrated at all and totally old school

KILL
October 5th 2010


72280 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

album needs more james murphy though

Dryden
October 5th 2010


13258 Comments


yah

qwe3
October 5th 2010


21369 Comments


needs more KILL

Wizard
October 5th 2010


19641 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Glad to see you still kicking around jk2two. Great review too, my favourite from the band.

Digging: Ash Borer - Cold of Ages

Sound
October 5th 2010


3904 Comments


Wizard sighting*




DetJohnKimble
October 5th 2010


83 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Cool review, awesome band, great album. Title track is one of the bands best.

KILL
October 5th 2010


72280 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

check this out if you havent already qwe

Terrifyer
October 5th 2010


3403 Comments


yeah its pretty boring

KILL
October 5th 2010


72280 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

you die

Prolapse
October 5th 2010


4370 Comments


cause of death is pretty good



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