Sound — 10
The technicality of Necrophagist's music has never ceased to amaze me. Mohammed Suicmez reigns as one of the cleanest and most articulate sweep pickers I have ever heard, and his uncanny ability to growl while playing goes almost unmatched. The music is basically the same and just as heavy as the band's first album, but there seems to be more focus on melodic leads and melody in general than the first album. Stabwound and the solo section of Seven are both good examples of this. The riffs are still fast and brutal. I would probably say this album is musically superior to Onset of Putrefaction. Also, it's worth noting that Suicmez plays with live musicians on this album, whereas he recorded all the tracks and used a drum machine on the previous one.
Lyrics — 8
The lyrics took an entirely different direction from Onset of Putrefaction. Though the first album's lyrics would be categorized as gore metal, poetic is a better word to describe the lyrics on Epitaph. The lyrics are much deeper and less violent than their previous work. Still, they fit the songs very well and don't feel out of place even for a moment. Not much to say about the vocals really. Suicmez growls just as good and deep as he ever has. No disapointments (or high-pitched screaming) here.
Overall Impression — 10
Overall, this album is a MUST-HAVE for fans of Onset of Putrefaction and death metal fans in general. They remain one of the most technical bands around. The guitar work is nothing short of impressive, and is sure to attract metal players everywhere. Seven and Stabwound are my personal favorites on this album, and are 2 of my favorite songs period. If you like death metal and you don't have this album or have even heard of Necrophagist, I would encourage you to pick this album up or order it.