Sound — 7
Gorguts' sound on their debut was nothing far exceeding the patented form laid down by floridian bands like Deicide and Obituary, yet this is still a must for fans of old-school death metal. Releasing their debut in 1991, they came to the forefront at the same time as bands such as Suffocation and Atrocity, who were really pushing the boundaries of technical playing in death metal. The thing that got me instantly hooked on Gorguts was their ability to write great songs, that weren't too similar to anything I'd heard before. Even though "Considered Dead" is but a shadow of Gorguts' later glory at the helm of the avant-garde death metal scene, the entire album is a crushing tour de force, ranging from full on extremity to soft but eerie acoustic interludes which are very expertly written. One of the more appealing aspects of Gorguts for me was the, shall we say, creepiness surrounding the album and the band. I mean pick up something like "World Demise" by Obituary and you're like yeah, cool, death and oh noes! Spooky. I think it's interesting to note that Luc Lemay, the vocalist and one of two guitarists, is a classically trained musician, so you can expect more from this band than others, experimentally at least which is evident on the later albums.
Lyrics — 8
Some of the lyrics were clearly written with the Carcass medical/anatomical theme to them, like Hematological Allergy and Innoculated Life, though in nearly every song there are examples of the dark poetry bands like Suffocation used in their songs. The early 90s was clearly the dawn of intellectual writing in death metal, as bands became less gore and death orientated (but not fully! ) and wrote with awareness and understanding of the world which increased the popularity and established the genre as a means of expression. An example of poetic lyrics on Gorguts' behalf would be taken from the song Stiff and Cold: "My frozen body I behold, slowly turning, stiff and cold, smell the sweet stench, in wind's blow of lost carcasses in the snow." It has that black metal feel to it though the songs would betray your judgement! Most of the songs portray rather terrifying scenarios. Gruesome without being explicit. Or maybe I'm just a pansy.
Overall Impression — 9
Gorguts would have to be put in league with Atrocity and Suffocation in terms of brutality and musicianship. If I had to compare it with another album (though original it is) I would say "The Ten Commandments" by Malevolent Creation would come close music wise and Luc has a kind of Glen Benton voice, except less half-assed! As I stated earlier the creepy, doom-laden attitude that surrounds Gorguts is what kindled my interest in the to begin with. It's a must for any metalhead serious about his CD collection, at all costs! That means buying it again if you get a single scratch on it! Nah, don't do that, just rip it to your PC so the feds can't get you for theft. The production on the album isn't the best though, the guitars often have a chainsaw-ish sound when played palm muted and the bass isn't very clear (which quite frankly is a crime) but the quality of composition and musicianship is top notch and it's enjoyable. James Murphy guests on Hematological Allergy (awesome solo) and Chris Barnes does additional vocals on Rottenatomy though it isn't very noticable. Awesome!