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Review: Carnifex – Slow Death

Carnifex is a five-member Modern Death Metal band from San Diego, California. Since their formation in 2005, they have released six albums and one EP. The band is currently signed to Nuclear Blast Records. Their current line-up is: Scott Lewis (vocals), Shawn Cameron (drums), Jordan Lockery (guitar), Cory Arford (guitar), and Fred Calderon (bass). Slow Death contains 10 songs and a total run-time of 37 minutes and 7 seconds.

Dark Heart Ceremony kicks off the album with some creepy sounding instruments accompanied by a piano. This lasts for about a minute then the metal starts. I really like the beat around 1:40. It’s extremely fast with some lead guitar pieces in it. Cameron does a really good job here. I also found the gun addition at 2:35 a nice touch. Lewis continues to deliver strong vocals ranging from lows to highs. Also don’t forget to check out the guitar solo from 3:32-3:50, it’s great.

Slow Death is one of my favorite songs from the album. Right off the bat it starts out with a sick head-banging riff. The “chorus” from 1:04-1:30 is really catchy. 2:08-2:33 has a sick two-step feel. I find it interesting how they transition into a half-time feel after. The half-time feel part contains some clean guitar work and a guitar solo. The sweep-picking in the solo was done well.

Drown Me in Blood begins with some more orchestral music. I really like how there are some powerful guitar chords and then we hear some sick fills by Cameron. 1:01-1:18 contains a brutal riff accompanied by some cool orchestral music. They did a good job on the chorus here. The breakdown that follows is really enjoyable. It isn’t that complicated except for what sounds like sweep-picking and squealies combined. There is another sick breakdown that occurs from 2:22-2:30. Be sure to check out another solo from 2:48-3:06. It contains sick slow and fast playing.

Pale Ghost begins with a cool beat. During the riff, there is surprisingly a sweet piano-sounding piece. 1:12-1:26 has another killer guitar solo. I really like the breakdown from 2:31-2:44. This is a decent track.

The intro to Black Candles Burning is sick. There’s a lot of guitar work going on. I also like the guitar riff from 1:04-1:12. It’s slow and doesn’t seem complicated but it’s great. 2:03-2:21 contains a rather interesting guitar solo. It feels like there is a mixture of soloing and lead-guitar playing in it. 2:58-3:16 has some sick lead guitar playing that is worth checking out.

The intro to Six Feet Closer to Hell is great. The chorus (0:45-1:04) was done very well. 1:37-1:56 has a fast guitar riff that sounds awesome. This song has a very heavy breakdown that occurs from 2:18-2:44. It also has some cool lead guitar work in the background. This song may not have the most amount of stuff going on in it but it’s a great track.

Necrotoxic is one of my favorite tracks on this album. Their chorus (0:39-1:05) is sweet. I love the line “Pray to the god of death”. 1:25-1:40 has a nice guitar riff. Also be sure to check out another great guitar solo at 2:27. What follows is another killer breakdown. I look forward to seeing this song played live.

Life Fades to a Funeral is an instrumental track. It has a very sad feeling to it. The guitar work in this track is pretty cool.

Countess of the Crescent Moon begins with a nice orchestral piece followed by the band’s normal sound. I love the fast playing Cameron has after the intro. The guitar piece from 0:46-0:59 is sick. I love the rhythm. I wasn’t really expecting a breakdown-type riff to occur at 1:45 but I like it. Also be sure to check out the guitar solo from 2:19-2:44.

Servants to the Horde brings this killer album to a close. I like the orchestral instruments mixed in with a guitar in the beginning. I really like the breakdown that occurs at 1:34. It doesn’t seem that complicated but it’s very heavy. Also check out the guitar solo towards the end of the song (2:47-3:08).

Overall, this is a great album. I would give it a 9.7 out of 10. There’s a lot of sweet guitar playing, insane drumming, and sick vocals with cool lyrics. Be sure to check them out on social media and see them live.

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