Defeated Sanity – The Sanguinary Impetus (Willowtip)

Sunday, 19th July 2020
Rating: 8.5/10

There’s nothing quite as musically devastating as brutal death metal when it’s done well. The sound is explosive, and can be the equivalent of a wrecking ball that is wildly swinging and smashing into everything in sight. Defeated Sanity have long been revered for their particular approach to the genre, and with The Sanguinary Impetus, that’s not about to change anytime soon.

The guitar tone alone gives Defeated Sanity an absolutely monstrous feeling, but unlike most bands within the genre, it’s not all that they have to offer. The sonically crippling tone is injected (much like the second half of the band’s 2016 Dharmata) with a layering of technical dressings that give influence from the days of Atheist and Cynic, not to mention the Suffo-brutality levels. While some may gauge the two to be an off-kilter pairing, given the devastating brutality of their speed-driven riff salad and punishing grooves, the band makes it work quite effectively. Those who want to simply turn their brain off and be smashed by thunderous brutality can do so, even if they can’t escape some of the delicate underlying riffing, and those who are drawn to that second half will most likely cherish repeat listens, as more and more of the technically-wowing factors being to bubble up further to the surface. For example, take the track, “Dislimbing the Ostracized.” It opens with full-force, like much of the album, and moves into some thick and chunky riffs and new vocalist Josh Welshman’s upfront gurgles, but you can also peel back the layers into some dense riffing (and basswork) as things progress. “Phytodigestion” is also a good track in this regard, opening up with a dizzying riff flurry but keeping the aggression at the forefront.

Just as visceral as anything else Defeated Sanity has done, with all of the technical additions to give you even more to chew on, The Sanguinary Impetus manages to indulge in the best of both worlds. A continued force within the realm of brutality, Defeated Sanity continue to be a high water mark.

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