Sarcofago
The Laws of Scourge


4.0
excellent

Review

by Geadom USER (9 Reviews)
October 16th, 2012 | 56 replies


Release Date: 1991 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Welcome to the third world.

Beginning his musical career as a vocalist from a humble Belo Horizonte (Brazil) band called “Sepultura”, Sarcofago founder Wagner Lamounier quickly departed in 1985 to form another extreme metal outfit, after having multiple confrontations with his old band mates. And while Sepultura history is far documented and known, it's a shame that Lamounier second outfit, Sarcofago, didn't share the same luck.

A shame, because setting himself to “create the most aggressive music ever”, Lamounier invented a form of expression not only in his music (blackened death metal), but in appearance (corpse paint, bullet belts, leather jackets)in Sarcofago first release, I.N.R.I., that inspired countless other bands, and is revered up until this day as a classic in the genre.

Continuing with a second well received and controversial record (1989 Rotting), Lamounier learned how to play guitar and introduced a more thrash-alike sound to the formula, giving the songs a semi sense of progression not heard in the previous record. But by 1991 The laws of Scourge, he also dropped the satanic imagery and lyrics, to introduce a proto Technical Death Metal record, that might be the best effort not only for the band, if not the whole South American scene.

Since the start of the title track, you can heard that the influence of the new members Fabio Jhasko (guitar) and Lucio Olliver (drums), added to Lamounier´s new direction, giving the band a precision, musicianship and general direction not expected from one of black metal pioneers. Olliver drumming is not only aggressive and on point, but also tasteful, exchanging between blast beats and double blasts in some of the songs key parts, and creating a sound that hints both at the band past, and what to expect on the future. His fills are also pretty good, giving a really great backbone to the more slower songs. It's a shame he only played on this record, due to the use of programmed drums on the two next (and worst) records of the band.

Lamounier and Jhasko guitar duo is also pretty good, giving us good riffs after even better riffs, but not overusing them too much, something that makes the album sounds very dynamic, keeping it as far as possible from boring. They also have the ability to do more slow and mid paced songs, like Little Julie and Midnight Queen, sound really moody, and know how to prevent the mid to fast paced as Piercings and Screeches from the silence , from being stale, giving a fresh but not out of touch sense to the musicianship. The only fault that you could make is that the solo's are very limited and suffer from being a little on short side, but they are rightfully used on the songs, never choking the song . Sadly they aren't the kind that are going to stick on your head on the first couple listens, but they hold pretty well in the long run, in the context of each song.

While the bass is not deep buried under the mix, Geraldo Minelli playing is overwhelmed in the classic metal sense of the era: It follows for the most part the guitars, with some exceptions, like the intro to Little Julie. Luckily, he also handles backup vocals and acoustic guitars on some of the tracks ( like the fitting chorus of Crush, Kill, Destroy), that make his appearance on the record more than worthwhile. The album also feature some keyboard parts in some songs, and given the excellent, clear and sharp (for the era, not the overproduced sharpness of today) production and mixing of the record, they sound pretty good, giving an extra atmosphere layer without taking the main light of the other instruments.

Vocally, is where this record is most difficult to rate. Lamounier voice is just EXCELLENT, giving harsh thrashed vocals mixed with a deeper death growl (similar to Chuck Schuldiner, the kind that you can understand), some melodic parts and two(!) Halford alike high pitched screams, assuring that you`re not going to get bored of his vocals anytime soon. His range is pretty good, making each song really unique and whole, specially on the thrash fest Crush, Kill, Destroy, or his more tetric parts on Prelude to a suicide.
The problem arises with the lyrics: while they have improved a lot from the first two records, giving a healthy dose of black on The black vomit, death in The laws of scourge and Piercings, and the always welcome (and third world influenced) social commentary (like on Midnight Queen, about a prostitute or Little Julie, dealing with being in love with an underage girl), is Lamounier still present mispronunciation and (small doses of) engrish, that prevent the perfection. Surely he can be understood most of the time, and he is far from the ridiculous lyrics that permeated the band first record (except for The black vomit, a re-recording of an old song), but some small details still persist. The record IS going to keep you interested AND head banging WITHOUT laughing at the same time, but you are warned.

Closing, this is a really good record. Is not going to make you marvel at his technical parts or make you hail Satan with hoods and torches, neither is going to make you want to overthrow your justice system. But it melts all the influences from the extreme metal genres with excellent results, never overwhelming you (something that seems to be the trait with a lot of progressive and technical bands today), and mostly, never boring you, with cohesive and fun songwriting, vocals and (for the most part) lyrics. Give it a spin, it may surprise you.

Recommended songs:

The whole album is diverse and good to just pick a couple songs (all are good), but Piercings, Crush, Kill, Destroy, Screeches from the silence and the title track are my favorites.



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user ratings (64)
Chart.
4.1
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
Geadom
October 15th 2012


2812 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Given that english is not my native language, and that this is my first review, any input, critic or
observation is welcome.

KILL
October 15th 2012


71856 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

INRI rules but havent given this enough listenz to rate

wont read the review cos its almost beddy byes but i bet it rules too!

Digging: A Guy Called Gerald - Black Secret Technology

Geadom
October 15th 2012


2812 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Ok, please give me your input when you can. Thanks. And the tracklist here lacks the two last songs,
Little Julie and Crush, Kill, Destroy.

Hawks
October 15th 2012


35824 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Rules.

bloc
October 15th 2012


34872 Comments


Wow this sounds great on Youtube

CaptainDooRight
October 15th 2012


29421 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

this really didn't have a rev? the fuk

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

Geadom
October 15th 2012


2812 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

What about the review? I know it has to have a lot of errors, so let me kow. Also:


Was this Review Well Written? Yes | No

CaptainDooRight
October 15th 2012


29421 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

excellent first review bro, pos'd hard

Geadom
October 15th 2012


2812 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks for the POS, guys, i cleaned a lot of the grammar on the review.
Bloc: It sounds good anywhere, this is a keeper my friend.

KILL
October 16th 2012


71856 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

so yea really great first review man, describes it well and makes me wana jam ahrd

NeoSpaz
October 16th 2012


4519 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

m/

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
December 11th 2012


19790 Comments


this rules and agreed awesome first review.

Digging: Spectral Lore - III

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
December 26th 2012


19790 Comments


sounds more like thrash than bm to me but fucking amazing

Hawks
December 26th 2012


35824 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Yeah this is a lot more thrash/dm than it is bm.

Tyrael
December 26th 2012


20883 Comments


fuk yea

Digging: Darkspace - Dark Space III I

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
December 26th 2012


19790 Comments


well whatever it is it rules

Geadom
December 27th 2012


2812 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Its thrash - dm made from a former black band. Only the black vomit has bm lyrics, but some influences can be heard there and there.

Geadom
December 31st 2012


2812 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Look what i´ve found!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g74UP8mwFMs

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
December 31st 2012


19790 Comments


what is is? (can't check at work)

Geadom
December 31st 2012


2812 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

An official video for "Screeches for the silence". Seems like the only one made for this album.



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