Obituary
Inked in Blood


3.0
good

Review

by Robert Davis CONTRIBUTOR (249 Reviews)
November 5th, 2014 | 48 replies


Release Date: 10/28/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: It's an album that will not change opinions, and worse still lose a few more fans, but Inked in Blood serves its purpose as yet another "Obituary-by-numbers" record.

Are Obituary beating a dead horse? That question comes to mind when listening to each of the band's supposed "comeback" albums, right from 2005's decent yet formulaic Frozen in Time through to the latest, this year's lazily titled Inked in Blood. They probably shouldn't be blamed for wanting to stick to a tried and tested formula throughout the last decade, but in doing so albums such as the half-hearted Xecutioners Return have suffered from a considerable amount of average musicianship.

Nonetheless, Inked in Blood does mark a career change for the band: It is the first record without bassist Frank Watkins since 1989's Slowly We Rot, making way for two new members in lead guitarist Kenny Andrews and Watkins' replacement, Terry Butler, the latter of which having been a member of both Death and Six Feet Under. Yet however consequential this line-up change may have been in the last year or so for Obituary, it doesn't seem to have affected the band's confidence and musical aspirations all that much. Because throughout Inked in Blood, despite the album's inconsistency and ineffectiveness towards the end, there's still something of a burning passion in each band member to bring out the best of death metal's early years. Songs like the short, razor sharp "Centuries of Lies", "Deny You" and the slightly more menacing "Minds of the World" all manage to contribute to a more or less effective death metal sound, which although still seem firmly rooted in the extreme metal scene of the late 80s, reminds us all that Obituary still have a little fire left in them. With some surprisingly good twin lead harmonies and well-executed solos ("Visions in my Head", "Back on Top"), the first half of Inked in Blood is certainly more effective than the latter, but at least it's not hard to get stuck into the album from the start.

The rhythm section seamlessly flows through most songs with little effort, but there's only so much of the same riff and song structure one can take before honestly admitting to a tiresome listen. And that's part of one of two glaring problems. One is the dependency on the same, riff-led build up into songs which are so much longer than they should be, and the other is the obvious tiredness of John Tardy's rough, aged vocal delivery. Sure, he manages to do the job of keeping up with the somewhat lackluster instrumentation, but that's about it. There's nothing in his voice that really hints at exploring more than just one emotion, no fire in the belly, it's simply just going through the motions. Most of the songs are too long as well, even with an average length of four minutes. Songs like the title track, "Pain Inside" and the closing, monotonous "Paralyzed by Fear" all have a tense build-up before falling back into the comfort zone and producing the same rhythm, same riffs and the same effect on its listeners. This is all good stuff for people wanting a brief thrill from a death metal record, but the unfortunate reality is that Inked in Blood will not age well, and worse still, be forgotten (or "frozen") in time.

Now for some, this is practically a good thing, given that most of us listening to Inked in Blood will know what to expect (whether you like the band or not). Yet this album won't change opinions, and it's worse still for the newbies who haven't heard any of Obituary's material, given that the album will give a negative impression, more so because of the average second half than the punchier, more menacing first half. But we all knew this is what Obituary's last album would sound like didn't we? And that's why it's not just average, it's good in that respect. Why should a band, who laid down their legacy as one of death metal's most well-renowned acts over two decades ago, change their direction to please the naysayers? Inked in Blood is formulaic, repetitive but still a damn good album for mindless headbanging.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
linguist2011
Contributing Reviewer
November 5th 2014


2413 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Album stream: http://loudwire.com/obituary-inked-in-blood-exclusive-album-stream/



Criticism is welcome, as always.

Digging: The Black Dahlia Murder - Nightbringers

emester
November 5th 2014


8163 Comments


Probably the worst death metal release this yeah. Those vox are esepecially horrendous. Great review though

Digging: Spectral Voice - Eroded Corridors of Unbeing

adr
November 5th 2014


11706 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

this is definitely not that bad. Still not good though, few decent songs, the vox is awful also, pos.

adr
November 5th 2014


11706 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

yea they always sucked Cause of Death is worst osdm album agreed 1.5/5

NocteDominum
November 5th 2014


7314 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Found this to be pretty enjoyable to be completely honest.

Gameofmetal
Staff Reviewer
November 5th 2014


10151 Comments


Ugh this was the first thing I heard by this band and I stopped halfway through because I hated it so much. Tried Cause Of Death tho, it was sweet.

Digging: Wolves in the Throne Room - Thrice Woven

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
November 5th 2014


7568 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0 | Sound Off

this is definitely not that bad. Still not good though, few decent songs, the vox is awful also, pos.



this.



Still, the band nails those Celtic Frost grooves.

Digging: Urarv - Aurum

Immolation666
November 5th 2014


1 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I like this album its not bad at all , its way better than the last two releases and am glad they came back with a good album!

theyrehere
November 5th 2014


38 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I really like the riff in Corporal Jigsore Quandary...er, I mean, Visions in My Head. Still, a fairly enjoyable album.

Insurrection
Contributing Reviewer
November 5th 2014


24403 Comments


i really have no incentive to check this out. good review tho

Digging: Protest the Hero - Pacific Myth

DrGonzo1937
Contributing Reviewer
November 5th 2014


13423 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Good review. This album is bland as hell though.

Digging: Chelsea Wolfe - Hiss Spun

accompliceofmydeath
November 5th 2014


4605 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Agree with most people. Not the worst thing ever, but those vox in some places are :/

Digging: Nerf Herder - Nerf Herder

Titan
November 5th 2014


17872 Comments


i'll bet i heard this 1000 times without hearing it at all

hikingmetalpunk
November 5th 2014


2078 Comments


But Obituary have never been good /quote

dumb fuck

Absolutely hated this album, though. /quote

not enough wank for the resident sput dm expert eh

albums not that bad tbpfh


psyclonus
November 5th 2014


153 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

good review, terrible album. really piss-poor. i'll stick with Cause of Death.

NocteDominum
November 5th 2014


7314 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

"not enough wank for the resident sput dm expert eh"



lol who's this guy hey




#notshitJaclistensto

Raz0rGrind23
November 6th 2014


449 Comments


Saw these guys with Carcass a week ago. While they put on a fairly good live show their matieral is still so one dimensional

bloc
November 6th 2014


43481 Comments


This is so damn bad

Digging: Venenum - Trance of Death

Kusangii
November 13th 2014


1607 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Band is ridiculously overrated

Ryus
November 13th 2014


15414 Comments


their first three (maybe even four) are good to great

Digging: King Krule - The OOZ



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