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Last Active 08-17-15 11:29 pm
Joined 08-08-09

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03.08.15 Symbolic Ranked [2]03.07.15 Death Ranked (Updated)
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Symbolic Ranked [2]

Thought I'd do my own ranking in light of the other one. Let's do this (with descriptionz!).

1,000 Eyes: This song's fine, but I really would have liked to hear more in terms of the middle section. It always felt like the refrain came back in way too early; some more solo or bridge time would have been nice. But that main riff during the verses is just awesome, bringing a perfect balance of brutality and melody. Plus, the mini guitar solo before the choruses is cool too.

Empty Words: I'm probably putting this a bit lower than some people would like, but I always found this song to be a bit too long. With that said, the calm intro is pretty nice and there are plenty of tempo changes that ensure you'll be on your toes throughout much of the experience.

Sacred Serenity: Aside from the amazing bass/drum intro that kicks this song off, it's a pretty conventional song for the standards of later Death. I do wish that this song had some more standout moments, but I'll mention some of the song's best sections. The first is really that great intro; between the bass riff and the fast guitar melodies, it's a feast for the ears. The other great moment is the aggressive snare-driven riff before the chorus. It doesn't last very long, but it leaves a memorable impression on the listener.

Zero Tolerance: While a bit lower on the totem pole for me when it comes to this album, I still really enjoy this song. The slow tempo keeps things very atmospheric and suspenseful, and the solo becomes a fantastic payoff that contrasts those sections very well. The harmonies displayed in the solo are well-executed and remind me a bit of NWOBHM music from the 80s.

Crystal Mountain: I'll be honest, I just really enjoy how accessible this one is. Easily the least complex of the songs (maybe barring Sacred Serenity), the riffs in this one are just a ton of fun to listen to. That galloping drum beat is just great, and the mixture of acoustic and electric guitars (especially in the outro) in this song is both varied and incredibly satisfying.

Perennial Quest: This one seriously grew on me over time. The longest track on this album, Perennial Quest twists and turns through a pretty sizable amount of tempo and dynamic changes and manages to be extremely compelling in the process. The final two minutes are especially memorable, as Chuck chooses to end things with a soft acoustic guitar portion that leaves the listener with something more reflective than outright energetic.

Symbolic: Of course this had to be high on the list. One of Death's best openers, Symbolic is fantastic at illustrating just what's in store for you throughout this record. Beginning with a riff that's simplistic but incredibly memorable, things soon launch into a series of thrash-based portions that will make your head spin with each change in tempo or drum patterns. Also, that little melodic section in between the intense riffage is a really nice touch.

Misanthrope: I just love how intense this one is. It storms right out of the gate with a great thrashy riff as Gene Hoglan's rapid-fire double bass drumming works perfectly in tandem with such aggressive guitar work. Add great juxtapositions between melancholic melodies and outright dissonance, as well as another great Chuck solo, and you have a treat worth revisiting again and again.

Without Judgement: Without a doubt one of my favorite Death songs. Between the fluidity of each musical transition, highly intelligent lyricism about judgement (of course) and human perception, and the fantastic mix between crushing metal segments and clean progressive rock passages, this one clearly takes the top spot.
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