Kill Maim Burn

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Debauchery's debut album, Kill Maim Burn, wasted no time with subtlety or subterfuge, but rather laid out the German group's career-spanning death metal agenda in all its gory, blood-splattered detail, for all to see, or hear, as it were. Of course therein also lies the reasons for Debauchery's poor treatment at the hands of critics from day one: take away the retch-inducing lyrics and all that's left is a rather monotonous and uninventive style of death metal, reminiscent of the movement's earliest manifestations and the like-minded Six Feet Under in particular. All-around main man Thomas "The Blood God" Gurrath certainly puts his diaphragm (and all its contents) where his mouth is, consistently alternating his bowel-churning growls with gargled-glass shrieking, as he guides his bandmates through the "rot & roll" traits of the title track, the chugging grooves of "For God, Emperor and Fatherland," and the lurching advance of "Butchered Zombies." What little melody/harmony can be found within is limited to the guitar solos ("Insane Human Butchery" being a prime example) and brief intro flourishes found on "Slaves to Darkness" (including a rare surprise in its psychedelic midsection) and the Tolkien-inspired "The Fall of Gondolin," but the mind-numbing doom grinds like "Hordes of Chaos" and "The Fifth Battle" (another Tolkien homage) simply prove too much to bear. So come for the lyrics and be sure to bring a barf bag, but don't expect a stimulating musical experience from Kill Maim Burn…it's just not that sort of record.

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