Review: Cryptic Enslavement – Perverse Hallucinatory Descent

Released under Gore House Productions on the 30th of March, Cryptic Enslavement are to thank for their LP Perverse Hallucinatory Descent, for it is without argument one of the better brutal death releases to come out this year.

Generally before I can talk about brutal death metal, I have to repeat a rule of thumb briefing for younger/newer listeners… So basically…
– Brutal Death Metal = Suffocation, Deeds of Flesh, Aborted, Sarcolytic etc.
– Slamming Death = Devourment, Visceral Disgorge, Kraanium etc.
Most slam bands are brutal death metal by default, but not every brutal death metal band is slam… Got it? Great.

Anyway, two songs in, many can agree that this band has the death metal style that complements both brutal death and slam. In a nutshell, it is as though a slam vocalist took over a brutal death outfit. You see, when you slow a song down, it’s sounding a lot like Devourment in the Unleash The Carnivore era, but when you speed it up, it’s Suffocation in some of their later years, yet when you mess with the bass and treble settings, it’s Katalepsy. This style is nothing other than a true and honest example of death metal’s purest and heaviest trademark… found in every song.

After a few tracks of zigzagging chugs and gutturals, one might start wondering when the slams are gonna come in. Well, “Knuckle Ground” is THE slam track. It covers knuckle dragger chugs, it speeds up and captivates listeners into a chromatic hypnosis just as every good slam song should. There are also plenty of pig squeals to keep many powerless from changing tracks or tuning out, and most of all, there are segments where one knows the song will just get heavier and heavier to the point where a pit becomes a fleshy meat grinder.

As we move through the tracks, we hear dialogue samples both interesting and obnoxious. The whole time, one remains hypnotised for the duration of chugs and blast beats in the album; just headbanging and waiting to hear what comes next. With much surprise, guitar solos start appearing near the end of the album, or more specifically, in the last three songs.

The final track, “Intravenous Fate” is my favourite. The thing which makes it stand out the most is the flawless transition from structure to structure – it is not by any means predictable, but at the same time, not a lot of comprehension is required to navigate through this beast. Also, this song has the best guitar solo on the album.

Overall, this has been a roller coaster ride with many turns and shifts that leaves one exhausted, yet satisfied and looking forward to riding again soon. 8/10. Keep them coming.

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