Autopsy
Macabre Eternal


4.0
excellent

Review

by Travis Marmon USER (32 Reviews)
May 31st, 2011 | 51 replies


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The kings of grotesque old school death metal are back with full force.

Formed by drummer/vocalist Chris Reifert in 1987 after he left Death, Autopsy had a mission to make the most grotesque, disturbing and most of all heavy music around. For the most part, they were successful. The band's first two albums, Severed Survival and Mental Funeral, are two of death metal's finest and most influential albums. After releasing two less-acclaimed, punk-influenced albums in Acts of the Unspeakable and ***fun, Autopsy hung it up in 1995. However, the band reformed in 2009, and last year they released the solid if unspectacular EP The Tomb Within. Just eight months later, the band has produced an hour-long album. Although the length is daunting for a band that normally hovers around 40 minutes, Autopsy more than make up for lost time.

Autopsy is:
Chris Reifert - Drums, vocals
Eric Cutler - Guitars, vocals
Danny Coralles - Guitars
Joe Allen - Bass

The most noticeable difference between Macabre Eternal and Autopsy's classic albums is the production. This being 2011, Macabre Eternal is much less muddy-sounding than the band's two-decade-old landmarks. However, the album still has a very raw sound that captures the brutality and power of Cutler's and Coralles' riffs, as opposed to the sterile atmosphere that has marred albums such as Atheist's Jupiter. Joe Allen's bass does not have the same gut-punching tone that Steve DiGiorgio and Steve Cutler had in the past, but its presence is thick and strong, especially on the intro of "Bridge of Bones." Reifert's drum tone has been beefed up as well. While not over-powering, his fills sound like they're being played with hammers. Reifert has also increased his vocal pallet, adding a sickening low growl to his always-effective mid-range snarl, maximizing the effect of his over-the-top lyrics (see "Dirty Gore Whore").

Although the 12-song 65-minute run time may lead to an expectation of filler, Macabre Eternal is relentless from the opening notes of "Hand of Darkness" and never stops its death/doom assault. With the exception of a brief acoustic section in "Bridge of Bones" and the melodic parts of "Sadistic Gratification," every moment on this album is heavy as all hell, whether it's played at the neck-breaking pace of "Hands of Darkness" or the devastating groove of "Bludgeoned and Brained." Every track is a keeper that matches up well with the band's classic material.

Although Autopsy is known for keeping things simple, the band experiments a little with the 11-minute penultimate track, "Sadistic Gratification." Beginning with a haunting guitar harmony, the song quickly moves into a fast, punishing set of riffs, drum fills and growls for five minutes. After a brief pause, the bass re-enters and the song comes back to an extended version of its intro. At around seven-and-a-half minutes, Reifert delivers a harsh spoken-word section which is joined by a woman's screams of pain. "I feel no remorse for you," he says. "Your death brings me pleasure." It is a moment so perfectly cheesy that you can't help but either love it or hate it. Any true death metal fan will appreciate this, and anyone who doesn't should really just avoid the genre entirely. It's not often that a band takes more than 20 years to release their first song of this length, but Autopsy's first epic is a gem.

Although "Sadistic Gratification" seems like a perfect closer, the band seems to have chosen the thrasher "Spill My Blood" as a closer to remind the listener that this is still an old school death metal album. After a bridge containing a classic Reifert vocal meltdown, the song goes into a slow and heavy signature Autopsy moment before resuming 20 seconds of pure speed, bringing the album full-circle.

Macabre Eternal is a vicious comeback album that far exceeds the expectations of any band in a similar situation. Any young death metal band (or rejuvenated veteran band) should look to Reifert and company as a source of inspiration and a lesson in how to make balls-out, no-frills death metal or death/doom. Autopsy are really back, folks. Brace yourselves.



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user ratings (174)
Chart.
3.5
great
other reviews of this album
Adam Thomas STAFF (3)
Can someone please get Chris Reifert a cough drop?...


Comments:Add a Comment 
HenchmanOfSanta
May 31st 2011


1872 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Not my best review, but I hope you enjoy it.

Digging: Godflesh - A World Lit Only By Fire

Psychopathologist
May 31st 2011


1924 Comments


6/5

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
May 31st 2011


6148 Comments


good review, pos'd.

Never bothered with this band, for obscure reasons...

This seems like a good place to start with this band.

Digging: Raven Throne - ???????? ?????????

Crysis
Staff Reviewer
May 31st 2011


16410 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Pretty great album, I liked this a lot. "Bridge Of Bones" is probably my favorite track.

Digging: Blut Aus Nord - Memoria Vetusta III ? Saturnian Poetry

MO
May 31st 2011


18775 Comments


Sadistic Gratification is up there for me, even though this seems like pretty tame death metal to me...

DoubtGin
May 31st 2011


6752 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

^just listening to it for the first time, m/

MO
May 31st 2011


18775 Comments


Same, whole things on youtube, so awesome

demigod!
May 31st 2011


44557 Comments


i gotta check this shit out yo

Digging: Fugazi - Repeater

AfterTheBreakdown
May 31st 2011


7147 Comments


I can't wait to listen to this!

AfterTheBreakdown
May 31st 2011


7147 Comments


Btw i pos'd this

Hawks
May 31st 2011


35838 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Great album.

Hyperion1001
Staff Reviewer
May 31st 2011


18524 Comments


Dirty Gore Whore

Digging: Objekt - Flatland

Wizard
May 31st 2011


19443 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Album is alright I guess.

Digging: Godflesh - A World Lit Only By Fire

YetAnotherBrick
May 31st 2011


4453 Comments


Fuck yes, Autopsy is back. Gotta get this. Good review, too.

Hawks
June 1st 2011


35838 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Sadistic Gradification is easily the best song on this album. So long, but so damn good. Surprised they were able to pull off that type of track.

MetalMartin
June 9th 2011


64 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Well, I just heard a few tunes from this album and honestly, I really liked them. So far imo, it's damned good. I like the kinda raw sound even though this one has the benefit of a better production compared to their classic early works.

MetalMartin
June 9th 2011


64 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Sadistic is just awesome. The lyrics are cheezy cool and I've enjoyed the evilness of the song when the woman started to scream. Sooo sick! These guys have balls!

HenchmanOfSanta
June 9th 2011


1872 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Who just neg'd me?

eggsvonsatan
June 10th 2011


1087 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I'm enjoying this a lot more than I expected. Kicks the shit outta The Tomb Within. 3.5-4/5

eggsvonsatan
June 10th 2011


1087 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Fucking Ay, this is great. Make that 4-4.5/5.



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