Maniac Butcher

The Incapable Carrion

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Although it once again boasted the audio fidelity of a mere demo and still found the Czech quartet croaking lyrics in their native tongue (actually, a culturally relevant bonus here), Maniac Butcher's second release, 1994's The Incapable Carrion, showed significant progress over its predecessor from a year earlier. Not that any but the most discriminating of extreme metal enthusiasts would be able to tell the difference, but gone were that first album's indistinct, one-dimensional sonic turds, molded from the basest blackened death metal; replaced by largely discernible songs -- no matter how inaccessible and uncompromising their overall aesthetic. Notable examples like "The Bond to God," "Holy War" and "Creation" showed Maniac Butcher mixing cleaner, thrashy staccato riffs in among their reliably crusty barrage and, ultimately, coming across reminiscent as much of Brazilians Sepultura's early material as contemporary efforts from Switzerland's Samael. The rustling of ghastly chains provides the perfect evocative sound effect for the introduction to "Awakening in Death" and the explicitly named "Jesus Christ" even featured a gloomy synthesizer intro, to boot. Of course, all of this was still not going to get Maniac Butcher confused with more finessed black metal combos like Emperor or Enslaved, but it did help elevate the Czechs above the ranks of the unwashed, unprofessional masses haunting the deepest heavy metal underground, and, in the process, earned them more supporters than some non-metal listeners might think possible.