Morbid Angel - 'Illud Divinum Insanus'
What’s in a name? Well, a lot apparently! A name, or brand, can give a person confidence in the craftsmanship, the quality and the knowledge that the product is made out of the finest material. A bit like Andrex toilet paper, you see the cute dog on the front and you know you’re getting good quality loo roll. However, sometimes a name that SHOULD promote quality produces a stinker (stay with me on the loo roll analogy here). Why am i using a loo roll analogy to get my point across? Well, because it is the perfect way to describe the new Morbid Angel offering ‘Illud Divium Insanas’.
Morbid Angel are the heroes of death metal; producing classic brutality such as ‘Alters of Madness’ and ‘Blessed are the Sick’. So, when news came out about Trey Azagthoth and Co producing an industrial album there was collective tutting and shaking of the devil horns. However, many gave Morbid Angel the benefit of the doubt; maybe they’d surprise us all and produce a brilliant crossover between death/industrial. Have they achieved this? Err, no...
Opening track ‘Too Extreme!’ tries desperately to be a mix of death metal and industrial, but it fails dramatically to be either. The shoddy and frankly boring guitars are played half heartedly, and most of the time sounds like the CD is scratched. ‘Existo Vulgoré’ is once again without a backbone or personality, and is more bland that watching women’s tennis. Perhaps the most listenable track on the album is ‘I Am Morbid’ which gives fans a teasing glimpse of what the album would have sounded like if they’d done it properly. The slower hooking rifts show that Morbid Angel still have death metal in their veins (even if it is only for five minutes). Other tracks like ’10 More Dead’ and ‘Destructors vs the Earth’ are only a shadow of what Morbid Angel are capable of, and are devoid of passion and aggression. But, perhaps the worst track on the entire album is ‘RADIKULT’. The drums sound like something a five year old could produce on Pro Tools, the vocals once again sound as though they’re merely bored by the whole experience. The vaguely jazz inspired tone falls flat on its face without a backbone to hold it up.
So, to sum up. It fails as a death metal album, it fails as an industrial album, and it fails to be a mixture of the two. Do not get me wrong, I’m not saying bands shouldn’t experiment but if a band does they should do it properly. And what’s even more astonishing is that the band have been heard saying that this is ‘the album is their career’. Yeah right, just keep telling yourselves that and it may come true. Or not...
You can catch Morbid Angel at Bloodstock Open Air on the 12th-14th August: http://www.bloodstock.uk.com/