Defeated Sanity – Passages into Deformity (Willowtip Records)

Wednesday, 27th March 2013
Rating: 7/10

Here’s one thing Defeated Sanity’s Passages of Deformity has going for itself: It’s devoid of song titles that only a death metal band would fall prey to, i.e. “Consumed by Repugnance,” “Engulfed in Excruciation,” “Calculated Barbarity,” each of which appeared on their 2010 Chapters of Repugnance. Death metal bands love song titles that have more syllables that needed. It makes gurgling all the more easy.

Here’s something working against it: The songs are dutifully same-y, as in, you can probably interchange the ideas peeled off on “Versus of Deformity” and “Frenzy.” It’s essentially a conglomeration of Suffocation-like brutality, meets any number of Unique Leader band audacity. With some ferocity.

For: At least they don’t have annoy Cannibal Corpse by having gore-soaked lyrics and themes. It’s a strong possibility CC couldn’t be more annoyed by having to continually answers questions as to how they feel about being unable to perform material off their first three albums in Germany, which happens to be Defeated Sanity’s homebase. Deustch double-standards are probably more irritating than the mosquitos that hang out in the Floridian sun.

Against: “Perspectives” overstays its welcome, with a near seven-minute run-time. You’re basically caught (in the marsh) of one bottomless boggy depot, with endless riff translations and dissonant chord chugs, some of which tread close to deathcore territory. Yikes.

For: The bass plucking of Jacob Schmidt is top-notch. Not only is he fleet-of-fingered (that sounds a smidge gross), he’s fully audible throughout the album’s nine songs. Lest we forget this is a brutal death metal album…compression central.

Against: It’s way too easy for lazy and quasi-inept journalists like yours truly to rename this album Passages into Uniformity. However, going that route is not going to happen here. It just did, but it really didn’t.

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