By Dr. Abner Mality

The last Obituary effort “Inked In Blood” didn’t do much for me. It certainly wasn’t anything radically different, but for some reason, it didn’t click. John Tardy’s bloodcurdling vocals didn’t sound right and the songs, while very heavy, were just kind of there.

Things are back on track with this new self-titled album. It delivers the Obituary I’ve come to know and love and John is back at his ghoulish best. There is a theory that any self-titled album should really deliver a statement about the band and this does. It’s a mixture of very thrashy, to the point ass-kickers and more groove-oriented stompers. “Brave” and “Sentence Day” are a one-two sock to the jaw of fast rippers that light the fuse. The tune “It Lives” is another fast one, but this is so primitive and gnarly, it sounds like it could have been on “Slowly We Rot”! Then we get those cuts based on catchy, warm grooves, like “Lesson In Vengeance” and “Kneel Before Me”. “Betrayed” sounds almost upbeat and cheerful, which is strange coming from Obituary, but it’s so hooky it works. “Turned To Stone” starts with one of the best riffs these guys have ever done before turning into a steady chug.

“Cause of Death” will always be the ultimate Obituary album for me, but “Obituary” is more than satisfying if you dig that warm, groovy death metal spew.