Gorguts
The Erosion of Sanity


4.5
superb

Review

by Jeremy Wolfers USER (106 Reviews)
May 18th, 2020 | 22 replies


Release Date: 1993 | Tracklist

Review Summary: With an everpresent atmosphere of dread and some of the most complex songwriting of Gorguts' long career, The Erosion of Sanity is a bona-fide tech-death classic and one of the most sinister albums of the classic death metal era.

There's something to be said for when an album sounds like its cover looks. The complex Dan Seagrave artwork, with its twisting forms and aggressive edges pretty much encapsulates the big changes Gorguts made from their debut release, Considered Dead. Whilst that album is sometimes regarded as more pedestrian in style than it actually is, The Erosion of Sanity makes clear technical advancements and significant changes to the songwriting, moving from tidy and clear old-school death metal to probably the most impenetrable of Gorguts' long career. And they released Obscura!

Compared to the other bands of the era regarded as tech death, like Death, Atheist and Cynic, Gorguts sound much closer to the brutal death metal style of Suffocation, with many riffs moving doing chromatic figures and even some little slam parts in Orphans of Sickness. As is typical of that style, the bass work is quite prominent, and it becomes the melodic core of some parts, such as during the pinch harmonic riffs of Condemned to Obscurity. The big difference from the brutal death metal sound is that there are almost everpresent guitar harmonies and different parts on the left and right tracks; much like Disincarnate, there's a big emphasis on perfect 5th based harmonies that yield an almost nauseating (in a good way!) sound when combined with the frequent use of diminished and chromatic patterns. The intricate guitar work and chromatic parts feel both way heavier and much more musical as a result, with an extremely doomy sound in the slower sections and a much better established tone of dread and decay. This works wonders on tracks like the title track, which moves between mid-tempo melodies and spidery riffing in a much more organic and cohesive way than on similar efforts from other bands. As with their debut, Luc Lemay's vocals provide an excellent variety between tortured screams and rugged growls, which works exceptionally well on this album when combined with the gross guitar harmonies.

Glimpses of melody from the guitars and bass fit into the sound well here due to the overall song structuring as well. It isn't polyrhythmic in the sense of some other tech death bands, but Gorguts make their riffs much more unpredictable by throwing in extra measures on top of standard 4/4 or 3/4 riffs, or reducing obvious repetition by removing certain phrases. A great example is Hideous Infirmity, which sneaks in a harmony part to its pre-verse tremolo picked riff that only occurs every 2nd run through, and gives the riff a subtle and unpredictable melodic backbone. The drum parts also play a huge part in the very dynamic, shifting sound of the album, with the capability of stopping and starting fast double bass parts and blast beats on a dime, whilst dialing back occasionally to show off the intricate guitar parts. Importantly, the band knows when to reduce the complexity and groove out a bit, so tracks like Odors of Existence don't become overwhelming when they introduce more intricate harmonies and unpredictable rhythmic structures.


Whilst the sound isn't far off from more orthodox styles of death metal, the uncommon rhythmic variation and variety of chugging heavier riffs, blasts of tremolo picking and twisty spidery lines leads to a very formless, shifting feeling sound. Compared to their later work, there's a less savage and aggressive element, but with its unusual use of traditional death metal song writing tools it feels more sinister and oppressive. As a result, The Erosion of Sanity feels like a culmination of the ideas of death metal and less outwardly erratic than Obscura, and more intricate than From Wisdom to Hate; to this day almost nothing sounds like it.




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user ratings (809)
4.2
excellent
other reviews of this album
demigod! (5)
Excellent, brutal, and beautiful technical death metal, with no guitar wanking....


Comments:Add a Comment 
parksungjoon
May 18th 2020


21552 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

dudde demigod! will always be one of the GOAT users of this sit,e but your review is better written and more fitting





anyway this is best guts

Madbutcher3
May 18th 2020


2618 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

yeh recently listening put it 2nd behind FWTH for me after a long time as my 2nd least fave

parksungjoon
May 18th 2020


21552 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

sick yea always love when an album grows on me







at least i hope thats what happened, rather than other things wearing off :[

el_newg
May 18th 2020


827 Comments


fuck yea brother honestly first 2 gorguts are my favs by em

wildinferno2010
May 18th 2020


803 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This is a really great review. I've been listening to this a lot lately, made it's way really quick to the top my fave dm albums.





Jacquibim
Staff Reviewer
May 19th 2020


4197 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Much love to Demi but I'm glad this has a better default review (rip bloon's)



"Gorguts sound much closer to the brutal death metal style of Suffocation, with many riffs moving doing chromatic figures and even some little slam parts in Orphans of Sickness"



Well picked, Lemay cites Suffocation as one of the band's biggest influences on this

evilford
May 19th 2020


44871 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Idk what best guts is and idc, I just bathe in riffs



Posd

Digging: Sacramental Blood - Ternion Demonarchy

FR33L0RD
May 19th 2020


2937 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Superb review Madbutcher. Pos.rev. m/

Wizard
May 22nd 2020


20304 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I really wish Gorguts would stop making music. I mean you listen to this and From Wisdom to Hate and you will agree they've become a wank of their past selves (has to do with certain members....Colin Marston....cough....stick to fucking Krallice).



Pos' for the review!

Madbutcher3
May 22nd 2020


2618 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I think Marston isn't the problem really, moreso the somewhat bloated song lengths and a lack of really good riffs compared to earlier stuff. Might be Hufnagel or could just be Lemay's songwriting priorities shifting

Wizard
May 23rd 2020


20304 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

You can clearly hear the obvious Marston/ Hufnagel riffs....doesn't even sound like Gorguts anymore. It's like they were hijacked!



My point being is that if you like new Gorguts and shit on Krallice, you're dumb.

JokineAugustus
May 23rd 2020


9887 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I love both old and new guts. Can't understand how you could possibly see Colored Sands as a 2.

Shadowmire
May 23rd 2020


6103 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

me not like



it not riff

JokineAugustus
May 23rd 2020


9887 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Some of their most memorable riffs are on CS imo. Like the opening to An Ocean of Wisdom or the conclusion of Absconders.

JokineAugustus
May 23rd 2020


9887 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I really wish Gorguts would stop making music.























Just no

Source
May 23rd 2020


18491 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

lol

evilford
May 23rd 2020


44871 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Who said that?

Shadowmire
May 23rd 2020


6103 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

wiz

evilford
May 23rd 2020


44871 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Oh that makes sense then

JokineAugustus
July 17th 2020


9887 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Condemned to Obscurity is basically the best song ever



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