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Six Feet Under – Commandment

Label: Metal Blade
Format: CD
Released: 2007
Reviewed By: The Goat


"Commandment (n.) an authoritative command or order; mandate; precept," so sayeth Webster's. This definition is an accurate description of Chris Barnes and Co.'s newest piece of devastation. This release took me by surprise. I wasn't aware that SFU was releasing something so hot on the tails of "13". Don't get me wrong, any new release by SFU is a good thing in my book. Umm, unless it's yet another cover album of some lost classic hard rock, then I mya be less eager. I digress…

 

"Commandment" starts of with a mid paced, aptly titled 'Doomsday'. It is not fast nor is it slow but somewhere in the middle. It is almost like SFU are letting their engine warm for the oncoming onslaught. It is a ball peen hammer to the skull, blunt force trauma by way of deepened grooves of saw blade riffage. Not a good song to listen to if you are at all hungover - your brain will ooze by its end.

'Thou Shalt Kill' fits almost thematically with the album's title. The song is packed with tighter riffs and pummeling rhythms. Mr. Barnes' vocals are disturbing, more gravely than those of the past it seems. The groove of this song, while nothing new for the likes of SFU, is still quite enjoyable. I can easily picture a whipping frenzied moshpit to the tune.

I love zombie tunes. 'Zombie Executioner' mixes fast, pummeling riffs with methodically placed mid paced rhythmic wreckage. A good tune but nowhere near as good as SFU's other zombie tunes. 'Edge of the Hatchet' strikes with the plodding pace of an axe wielding maniac looking for the poor co-ed in the woods near a supposedly abandoned hunting cabin after he has slaughtered her jock boyfriend. 'Bled to Death' is the theme song of the same axe wielding maniac as he casts his eyes over his destructive and murderous rampage.

My favorite tracks, though, are 'As the Blade Turns' and 'The Evil Eye'. It has all the proper SFU elements: razor sharp saw blade riffs, gutteral chanting of Mr. Barnes, and devastating rumble of the drums and bass. The chorus will make you, nay, command you "As - the - Blade - Turns…" Yet, "The Evil Eye" will throw you, not because of any experimentalism of, say, "Bringer of Blood" but because the unsettling nature of the groove shows how merciless SFU can truly be.

"Commandment" does not break any new ground but it does show that Six Feet Under can deliver a devastatingly groovy album by staying the corpse, ahem I mean, course.

 
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