Review Summary: An unlistenable masterpiece.
Waking The Cadaver were one of a kind; I cannot think of another band with this much luck. Passing this album to a label executive and have him not only think that it is not painful to listen to, but also approve the record and get it ready for release, surely needed an insane amount of pure luck and nothing more. There is an interlude in the middle of the tracklist which consists of a 53-second long recording of the band smoking the bowl and choking, and yet someone outside of the band thought it is worthy of release. Perverse Recollections of a Necromangler is a fundamentally broken piece, but I'd be lying if I said it's not fun to listen to.
From a writing standpoint, it surely is something to be hold. During the 26 minutes of runtime the band sees fit to feed the listener the same pig squeal vocals, needlessly busy sections switching back and forth with three-note slam riffs and breakdowns, with the only thing resembling some sort of relief being the aformentioned interlude. The closest this record comes to having a true highlight is "Raped, Pillaged and Gutted" with its actually frantic and relatively impressive fast sections. It is blatantly obvious that these are all mosh anthems, meant for Kyles wearing camo shorts and high white socks to mosh the night away to. "I Know the Insides of Women" (ugh) with its intense, slamming breakdown at the outro is the most fitting for a closer, and brings the most diversity to the experience of this musical journey, but this track, along with everything else, manages to get a laugh out of me almost every time. In spite of Perverse Recollections of a Necromangler being shorter than some EPs out there, the band sees fit to add filler tracks. "Tire Iron Emblugeonment" has literally no distinct qualities about it, and feels like Waking the Cadaver padding out the tracklist of an album already short on ideas. While we're on the topic of filler I should also mention the introduction cut. I love myself a good introduction to a record, but this one is just perplexing. It's an audio clip of sci-fi noises, followed by the sound of automatic firearms being shot, people screaming and necks being snapped. I have no idea how this introduction is supposed to introduce anyone to this record, as the next thing you're hearing is an assault of 'bree-bree' vocals and sloppy drumming. Which leads us to my next point.
If you listen close enough, you'll notice the band has no understanding of the concept of tempo; they will build up to a section in a given tempo, and top it with the same riff played at a slightly different speed. Keep in mind, these are not intentional, as never in my life have I seen a 5 BPM change that was not the effect of the drummer's inexperience. Let's not kid ourselves, the band just did not record this album to a click and it shows in the most ridiculous way possible. I remember my first listen of this record, and one thing didn't stop bugging me since then. The drummer is capable of rushing with an Infant Annihilator-worthy gravity blast beat, but cannot keep up a double bass in tact for longer than 4 seconds. I cannot believe this took almost 3 months to record; most of the performances seem like they were wrapped up in max 3 takes. The vocalist squeals, brees and pukes his way through every track. Some of the vocals literally sound like recordings from the inside of an intestine. The very occasional growls actually sound pretty massive, and would fit pretty amazingly on a good death metal album, but mister Don Campan does not seem to understand that; he'd much rather have you listen to his impressions of a pig vomiting that he calls brutal vocals.
And it sounds magnificent.
I did not rate this record 5 for no reason. The more I listen to Waking the Cadaver's debut, the more I get the impression it is metal music's answer to Viper's You'll Cowards Don't Even Smoke Crack (or the other way around, due to release time). It's a shocking, puzzling listen, whose enjoyability mostly stems from its unintentional mistakes, lack of variety and the artist's capability to sink below the listener's already low expectations with each passing second. I will admit, I like some pain with my pleasure, which is the reason I fell in love with metal music in the first place, and Waking the Cadaver delivers lots of pain. It's all broken at the seams, but the worst thing you can do is try piecing it together. Perverse Recollections of a Necromangler is exceptionally good at capturing the spirit of death metal brought by bands like Autopsy or Cannibal Corpse; what I mean by that is the band has the same musical goal as their 90's predecessors, which is to produce the most vile, inhumane and disgusting sounds a human being is capable of producing. At 26 minutes, it feels massive, overwhelming, gross and legitimately primitive and blunt. It's a lively and visceral experience from start to finish, and the lack of diversity across the board only helps in this regard. Its incapability of producing a satisfying sound makes me laugh and weep at the same time, and I don't think I can say anything similar about any band in this vein of metal music.
Perverse Recollections of a Necromangler started slamming brutal death metal as we know it today. Along with Abominable Putridity and Cephalotripsy it contributed to the slam metal boom of 2007. Even Vulvodynia, who I see as one of the better acts in the genre have a cover of "Raped, Pillaged and Gutted" on one of their albums. I still find it amazing that this band essentially influenced a movement by producing one of the most awful pieces of music ever conceived by a human. The worst approach you can take while listening to this, is expecting the same things you typically would in a quality metal album. It surpasses these boundaries by making unintentional mistakes almost every time there was a possibility of making one. It is an act of 5 barely talented musicians coming together, wanting to have some fun while rocking some local shows and making some hardcore kids get a few bruises and lose a few teeth in the pit. It's a divine intervention in a genre where a deity is rarely welcome.