Soilent Green

Sewn Mouth Secrets

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    9
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AllMusic Review by

Sewn Mouth Secrets is a terrifying slab of dense, grinding blues-based metal and is the band's strongest effort to date. Each song is a nonstop sequence of constantly morphing riffs and assaultive, split-personality vocals, leaving listeners little chance to catch their breaths. Throughout, frontman Ben Falgoust alternates between an agonizing black metal scream and a hardcore-derived, semi-barking voice, at times tossing in a somber spoken word passage or a death metal-style growl. His varied vocals, together with his sadistic lyrics, make for a frightening and intense presence. Musically, the band deftly shifts gears in and out of blastbeat-driven grind sections, Southern-flavored rock grooves, and moments of complex, odd-time trickery. The most powerful moments, though, come when they suddenly slow things down and belt out a monstrous, Black Sabbath-inspired sludge riff, as they do towards the ends of "It Was Just an Accident" and "Build Fear." There are only a few quiet moments, most notably the bluesy intros on "Build Fear" and "Her Unsober Ways," and these provide a welcome contrast to the otherwise endless aggression. Beneath the roar, Sewn Mouth Secrets contains a maze of detail and -- believe it or not -- subtlety, but it is such an extreme and unrelenting album that it requires a number of spins just to get a handle on, let alone digest. For strong-stomached listeners, though, it is well worth the investment.

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