Cannibal Corpse has been grinding up body parts and destroying faces for about two dozen years now, with a dozen full-lengths and a trail of gore to show for themselves. The band that once raised the soiled bile of the likes of Bob "Where Are My Keys?" Dole and Joe "Where Are My Principles?" Lieberman supplies more death metal devastation with their 12th release, Torture.
Cannibal Corpse originated from the ashes of Buffalo-based death metal acts like Tirant Sin and Leviathan. They've gone through a few personnel changes since their inauguration in 1988, but the modern manifestation still breathes fire.
The quintet engrosses on every single cut found on Torture, permeating the happily unwholesome proceedings with diverse chastisement. The album is a gory expedition, feeding from the band's more contemporary take found on recent records like Evisceration Plague and the dawn of Cannibal Corpse found on Tomb of the Mutilated and Butchered at Birth.
Stability over recent years has helped created a stouter core for Cannibal Corpse. Torture is the third consecutive album to use the line-up of co-founding drummer Paul Mazurkiewicz, guitarists Rob Barrett and Patrick O'Brien, co-founding bassist Alex Webster, and vocalist George "Corpsegrinder" Fisher.
The brevity of the band's vicious seizures, along with the fluency, is obvious from the outset with the searing "Demented Aggression." Vehement drums and a tempest of gruelling guitars conspire to form a mosh pit essential, with Corpsegrinder's vocals commending the annihilation in the valley below with a distorted amalgamation of barks and howls.
Cuts like "Sarcophagic Frenzy" and the agitated but dazzling "Intestinal Crank" distribute more of the inhumane goods, complete with perpetual drumming and a spiralling-straight-to-hell barrage of guitars.
"Scourge of Iron," a personal favourite, digs in with a slow-burning groove. It has elusive dashes of Southern-fried stoner rock melting in a lake of sour death, with Fisher's grating tones fitting the forsaken but impressive atmosphere flawlessly.
With Torture featuring tracks like "As Deep as the Knife Will Go" and "Followed Home Then Killed," it's safe to say that Cannibal Corpse hasn't moved away from the ferocious imagery that saw them "undermine the national character of the United States." To go with the menace, the band actually gives a shit about things like song construction, technical prowess and melody. Imagine that.