Following a somewhat formative but still pretty respectable EP in 1991's Human Waste, Long Island, NY's Suffocation really broke through to the underground metal masses with their first full-length assault, Effigy of the Forgotten, in 1991. Delivering a truly devastating display of technical death metal bordering on grindcore, this incredibly influential release opened the doors for an entire generation of extreme metal miscreants who would subsequently make their uncompromising sounds the prevalent template for East Coast metal in the '90s. Matching outrageously guttural vocals with a bottom-heavy guitar foundation, spewed forth at blistering speed and unparalleled brutality, Effigy's overwhelming, claustrophobic, and, well suffocating rush, belied a surprisingly developed and, dare we say, "sophisticated" sense of songwriting. Crushing examples like the title track, "Infecting the Crypts" and the masterful "Seeds of the Suffering" probably frightened many unprepared listeners with their unapologetic onslaughts, but Suffocation's quick rise to prominence proved that even more were willing to endure the initial shock in order to appreciate the band's maniacally complex time changes and the lead and rhythm guitar acrobatics (notably in the brilliantly titled "Reincremation"). Not for the weak of will even today, Effigy of the Forgotten, is a death metal tour de force.
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AllMusic Review by Eduardo Rivadavia