Gorguts - _Obscura_
by: Paul Schwarz (
Apart from being one of the longest death metal albums ever recorded, at just over 60 minutes, _Obscura_ is also one of the finest. Gorguts have done something which has become increasingly more difficult as the years have gone by: they have produced a strikingly original album. How did they achieve such a feat? Well, judging by the music, artwork and lyrics of _Obscura_, it has something to do with residing in a world not entirely earthly. But without speculating on the current or recent past mental states or experiences of the musicians involved in it, what can still fairly be said about _Obscura_ is that it is abstract and discordant to a point where I almost feel like narrowmindedly labeling the music which ensues as the product of a sincerely twisted mind. The discordance of the guitar riffs which decorate _Obscura_'s tapestry are the core of the madness; add strange, almost off time, drumming, astoundingly individual bass lines and Luc Lemay's tortured vocals, and you have a sound which, when represented perfectly by Pierre Remillard's (Cryptopsy, Obliveon) production, has the power to take its listeners to other worlds of astounding beauty, dark mystery and intense complexity. I find it very difficult to describe what Gorguts have captured or compare it to anything else I have heard. I listen to and love a huge volume of death metal, it is my favorite musical style at present, but I still find few albums which are even comparable to _Obscura_. Whether there will be as many clones of Gorguts new found take on the style as there was of others' innovations in the past will remain to be seen. What is certainly the case, however, is that Gorguts are due credit for the original musical path they have chosen to follow. I commend them for it and, after one listen to _Obscura_, I think you will too.
(article published 1/9/1998)
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