Review Summary: Surgically Hacked Pt. II
Many consider Sam Raimi’s “Evil Dead 2” to be a remake of the first movie, only everything about it is better, as is reflected in its $10,900,000 grossing at the box office, around $8 million more than the first film grossed. In some respects, “Incisions of Perverse Debauchery” is much like “Evil Dead 2.” Pathology’s debut was flawed – it was too short, the production was a little on the weak side and all the tracks ran together due to the constant extreme tempo throughout. “Incisions” sees the band take their first album, and rewrite it, both upping the tempo and the technicality of the music.
There was a space of two years between “Surgically Hacked” and “Incisions,” and it paid off. Songs on the band’s debut rarely passed the two minute mark, and were over before they'd had a chance to develop, yet the songs on the follow up rarely fall below the three minute mark. Whilst the signature sound that was established on their first out, Pathology's unique mash of brutal death metal with a technical edge and grind influences is still present here, yet it sounds far more refined. The album has a more varied pace and the longer song lengths have worked wonders, as the band elaborates on ideas instead of ending a song almost as soon as it’s begun. Although Pathology’s signature sound remains, the riffs are even more extreme, the drums are even faster and their song writing has improved, using enough tempo changes to keep things interesting, venturing away from the extreme tempos that ran through "Surgically Hacked".
The production is slightly better as well. The vocals are more present in the mix and feature a little more variation, and the drums are no longer overpowering the guitars, which are crunchy as always. Whilst the grind influences are present, Pathology are experimenting, albeit only slightly, as there are many thrash metal-esque riffs that wouldn’t be out of place in a Slayer song. “Incisions” also sees the introduction of samples, which are never overused, and often enhance the track. Lyrically, Pathology stick to what they know - gore and medical jargon which would be fitting on a Cannibal Corpse record, or an Aborted album.
Because Pathology are essentially rewriting their first record, most of the songs on the album come across as being b-sides off the first album, and if you enjoyed "Surgically Hacked," then you'll enjoy this. This is the last Pathology album released before they signed with Victory Records, turning towards a more mainstream sound in the process. If you enjoy the unrestrained, raw nature of Pathology’s earlier works, then unfortunately, the ride ends here.