SANGUISUGABOGG – “Homicidal Ecstasy”
The band from Ohio with the name I can’t pronounce—SANGUISUGABOGG—is back with a second full-length album titled “Homicidal Ecstasy.” Let the cantankerous old-man opinions begin!
I’ve seen this band’s name all over the place recently. It turns out, they only formed a little over three years ago and somehow immediately rose to prominence. Good on them. They’ve released what seems like a single for every year the planet’s existed (so, like, 4.54 billion singles?), plus one demo and one prior full-length. “Homicidal Ecstasy” is the first of the band’s output that I’ve allowed inside my ear dungeons.
SANGUISUGABOGG plays a raw, primitive type of death metal that’s stylistically influenced by gore-drenched late-‘90s and early-aughts bands like SIK FUK, MALIGNANCY, FLESHGRIND and early SKINLESS, while taking sonic queues directly from the book of MORTICIAN. It’s a heavy, topsy-turvy brew if not the most interesting thing I’ve ever heard.
The biggest weakness of “Homicidal Ecstasy” is that it’s extremely homogenized. The entire album sticks to mostly one tempo, one vocal approach, one texture, one groove, and so on. It all lends itself to the cliché criticism of death metal going back 35 years: The album sounds like one long song.
Conversely, the band’s approach to this latest release harkens back to the pre-grid analog days before every bedroom producer could put out robotically precise, impossibly antiseptic music, free of any of the anomalous imperfections we used to call “human musicianship.” That alone makes “Homicidal Ecstasy” standout amongst its peers.
Beyond that, SANGUISUGABOGG delivers on death metal’s implied contract with us listeners. The opening track is called “Black Market Vasectomy” and it’s followed by other profound, poetic meditations including “Testicular Rot”, “Skin Cushion”, and “Necrosexual Deviant”. We want gross, tasteless hilarity, and SANGUISUGABOGG dishes it out with a shovel.
While SANGUISUGABOGG’s “Homicidal Ecstasy” doesn’t reinvent the wheel—in fact, I’m not convinced their wheel is even round—they do bring the gore, the guttural, and the heavy in a primordial way that’s all too rare these days.