After years of waiting, Texas speed metal gore legends Rigor Mortis have finally released their final album(and the first to feature the original lineup since the 1983 self-titled debut), â€œSlaves to the Grave.â€
Kicking things off with â€œPoltergiest,â€ â€œRain of Ruinâ€ and â€œFlesh for Flies.â€ These Casey Orr written tracks boast lyrical terror and are some of the best of the bands career. Take a portion of â€œFlesh for Fliesâ€ for example:
â€œMeatâ€™s meat and a manâ€™s gotta eat,
Youâ€™d better leave the kitchen if you canâ€™t stand the heat,
Iâ€™ll grind your bones,
Iâ€™ll eat your soul,
Iâ€™ll use your skull for my dinner bowl;â€
If that isnâ€™t chilling enough, front man Bruce Corbitt has no problems with the execution.
Rigor Mortis is tight on this record. The timing is precise. Harden Harrisonâ€™s drumming and Orrâ€™s bass are in sync and never miss a beat. The late Mike Scacciaâ€™s (ex- Ministry) riffs are more malevolent than ever on his final recording. Corbitt is pin-point accurate with his signature screams littered in the right places. The thrashing banjos feel of â€œThe Infectedâ€ is one of the many examples of how cohesive of a unit Rigor Mortis is in their purest form.
Other choice cuts include â€œBlood Bath,â€ â€œCurse of the Draugrâ€ and the two part â€œSacramentum Gladitorumâ€ and â€œLudus Magnusâ€- the former being an instrumental piece leading into a whopping nine and a half minute closer (easily Rigorâ€™s longest song in their catalog).
Although every song on the album is a keeper, there are some that just donâ€™t fare well as others. â€œFragrance of Corpseâ€ and â€œAncient Horrorâ€ are good, but they just arenâ€™t as strong as any of the other tunes on the album.
Having said that, â€œSlaves to the Graveâ€ is the best album Rigor Mortis could have possibly chose to end their career with. An intense offering with the original lineup and some phenomenal production work by 13th Planet studios in El Paso, TX. This album is a must have and a must listen for any fan of metal.
Listener beware: youâ€™re in for a scare.