CARCASS “Torn Arteries”

By Dr. Abner Mality

There’s no question CARCASS is one of the most polarizing acts out there. That happens when a band changes their sound as radically as these guys have. Here’s a newsflash: if you’re waiting for the band to return to stomach-churning goregrind and sickening autopsy collages, you can keep waiting. That ship has sailed for good. I miss those days myself. If you enjoyed the last CARCASS album “Surgical Steel”, chances are that “Torn Arteries” will also float your boat.

There are times when the band’s weird stoner rock fetish puts me off, like “Dance of Ixtab” and the dreadful beginning to “Wake Up And Smell the Carcass”. Bill Steer has never made any secret of his love for 70’s hard rock, but sometimes it’s better left in FIREBIRD or GENTLEMAN’S PISTOLS. That being said, this album has some great melodic death metal moments like the colossal ending riffs to “Flesh Ripping Sonic Torment Limited” (some definite irony in that song title) and the “Heartwork” sounding “Kelly’s Meat Emporium” and “In God We Trust”. “Under The Scalpel Blade” could have been on “Necroticism”.

Although there is some experimentation going on, especially in “The Scythe’s Remorseless Swing”, this album finds CARCASS locked in a comfortable groove, exploring much the same territory as on “Surgical Steel” and “Heartwork”. I would have wished for more tunes in the vein of “Under The Scalpel Blade”, but there you go. My description of “Torn Arteries” should definitely let you know whether CARCASS 2021 is for you or not.