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Cannibal Corpse


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9 hours ago, FatherAlabaster said:

"Kill" wouldn't be my fifth or even seventh choice, but in general I doubt they have anything that would appeal to the refined sensibilities of a Requiem.

I don't know how refined my sensibilities are, but I do struggle to find much to hang my hat on with CC. I only ended up with 'Kill' by chance - I think it was at the time of its release and I thought I should probably own at least one of their albums. The first two tracks are alright but yeah, the whole thing loses me pretty quickly. 

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32 minutes ago, BlutAusNerd said:

Carcass was topping that level of over-the-top gore obsession before Cannibal Corpse even formed. Just sayin'.

I'd say the difference is that Carcass did it in a more sophisticated and ostentatious way, masquerading as if they were medical students detailing gore with precise medical terminology. Cannibal Corpse's take on gore was straight-forward and simple in its shocking and visceral nature which made it more relatable to the average person. 

 

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2 hours ago, Vampyrique said:

I'd say the difference is that Carcass did it in a more sophisticated and ostentatious way, masquerading as if they were medical students detailing gore with precise medical terminology. Cannibal Corpse's take on gore was straight-forward and simple in its shocking and visceral nature which made it more relatable to the average person. 

 

Even in that case, the likes of Autopsy and Necrophagia beat them to the punch, but had more powerful and less cartoonish music to back it up. I'm not sure how Cannibal Corpse became the band for non-death metal fans to flock to, but I don't get the appeal.

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2 hours ago, BlutAusNerd said:

Even in that case, the likes of Autopsy and Necrophagia beat them to the punch, but had more powerful and less cartoonish music to back it up. I'm not sure how Cannibal Corpse became the band for non-death metal fans to flock to, but I don't get the appeal.

I'm sure that you must know why. It's down to exposure and subsequent popularity, not any kind of merit-based system. Autopsy and Necrophagia aren't anywhere near as popular and never have been. And I'm sure you remember the film Ace Ventura. Cannibal Corpse were exposed to a lot of people who'd never heard of death metal before and for years there were rumours about them being Jim Carrey's favourite band. So there's a certain degree of outrageousness and novelty in that alone that appeals to people who were likely listening to something, mundane by comparison, like grunge music. With any genre of music, including metal, a high percentage of listeners are casual fans who don't delve to deep into the genre's history and don't care to. And not to mention, for a lot of people Cannibal Corpse are their entry point into extreme metal so I can only assume there's a lot of nostalgia there and a strong mental/emotional association between the band and the genre. And all of this is built upon and magnified within the context of a pre-internet world where facts and information were scarce at best. I think they're a good band who gets too much hate from hardcore death metal fans and too much acclaim from casual fans. 

 

 

 

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14 hours ago, Vampyrique said:

I'm sure that you must know why. It's down to exposure and subsequent popularity, not any kind of merit-based system. Autopsy and Necrophagia aren't anywhere near as popular and never have been. And I'm sure you remember the film Ace Ventura. Cannibal Corpse were exposed to a lot of people who'd never heard of death metal before and for years there were rumours about them being Jim Carrey's favourite band. So there's a certain degree of outrageousness and novelty in that alone that appeals to people who were likely listening to something, mundane by comparison, like grunge music. With any genre of music, including metal, a high percentage of listeners are casual fans who don't delve to deep into the genre's history and don't care to. And not to mention, for a lot of people Cannibal Corpse are their entry point into extreme metal so I can only assume there's a lot of nostalgia there and a strong mental/emotional association between the band and the genre. And all of this is built upon and magnified within the context of a pre-internet world where facts and information were scarce at best. I think they're a good band who gets too much hate from hardcore death metal fans and too much acclaim from casual fans. 

 

 

 

Still though, why them? Even though the album sucked, Morbid Angel was the death metal band that had the major label release. It's plenty accessible, as is the "best selling death metal album of all time", Obituary's The End Complete, but Cannibal Corpse is that band for many instead of other more logical choices. Maybe it's just the perfect storm of factors, the "shock value", the cartoonish brutality that would be what your mom might expect death metal to sound like, the names and imagery of the songs and albums, etc..., but I still don't get it. I can listen to one or two songs and enjoy them here and there, but to sit through a whole album or live performance is absolutely grueling. Maybe that's how their fair-weather fans are too...

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6 minutes ago, BlutAusNerd said:

Still though, why them? Even though the album sucked, Morbid Angel was the death metal band that had the major label release. It's plenty accessible, as is the "best selling death metal album of all time", Obituary's The End Complete, but Cannibal Corpse is that band for many instead of other more logical choices. Maybe it's just the perfect storm of factors, the "shock value", the cartoonish brutality that would be what your mom might expect death metal to sound like, the names and imagery of the songs and albums, etc..., but I still don't get it. I can listen to one or two songs and enjoy them here and there, but to sit through a whole album or live performance is absolutely grueling. Maybe that's how their fair-weather fans are too...

What does logic have to do with whether someone likes a band? I pretty much agree with Vampy here. I won't sit here and defend CC to the death, because I hardly put them on anymore, but they were a big part of my intro to death metal. I think the main reason why they've had such career success is that they didn't fold or go on hiatus or change their sound drastically during that period in the late 90s-early 2000s when so many other DM bands were ceding the field. Their early stuff has a fun factor that's missing from some of the other "classic" bands of the era, and their run from Gallery Of Suicide to The Wretched Spawn is solid and engaging. Like them or not, they helped to set the standard. 

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1 hour ago, BlutAusNerd said:

Still though, why them? Even though the album sucked, Morbid Angel was the death metal band that had the major label release. It's plenty accessible, as is the "best selling death metal album of all time", Obituary's The End Complete, but Cannibal Corpse is that band for many instead of other more logical choices. Maybe it's just the perfect storm of factors, the "shock value", the cartoonish brutality that would be what your mom might expect death metal to sound like, the names and imagery of the songs and albums, etc..., but I still don't get it. I can listen to one or two songs and enjoy them here and there, but to sit through a whole album or live performance is absolutely grueling. Maybe that's how their fair-weather fans are too...

Because the music industry had always worked this way, especially pre-internet. Of course bands needed at least a modicum of talent and the right amount of luck but it's exposure through media and having the right connections, as well as reputation and lore that has always been more significant to a band's success than any kind of merit - certainly that is the case in a less popular genre like metal. And actually, I think it would be interesting to know how many of the obscure but very talented bands that are heavily praised by the underground were just lazy, couldn't get their shit together, were hard to work with, and/or foolishly turned down opportunities. You'd be surprised at how common this is. Cannibal Corpse were given an opportunity to make a cameo in major film likely because of the novelty factor, albeit starring in a film may not have be very 'metal' and 'kvlt' of them, but they took it and it worked in their favour. I'm sure their fanbase grew exponentially. Morbid Angel signed to a big label and went in a more accessible direction and were criticized for it by the metal underground but this undoubtedly helped them gain exposure and new fans.   

And as I alluded to before, not too many people 'research' death metal attempting to understand its history and find the best bands and albums. I'm guessing that you do, but even websites like metal-archives, wikipedia (etc.) were incomplete and full of errors when they first came out and for years afterwards. So back then it would be hard to be knowledgeable on the subject unless you worked for a bigger label or did something along those lines.      

 

 

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3 hours ago, FatherAlabaster said:

What does logic have to do with whether someone likes a band? I pretty much agree with Vampy here. I won't sit here and defend CC to the death, because I hardly put them on anymore, but they were a big part of my intro to death metal. I think the main reason why they've had such career success is that they didn't fold or go on hiatus or change their sound drastically during that period in the late 90s-early 2000s when so many other DM bands were ceding the field. Their early stuff has a fun factor that's missing from some of the other "classic" bands of the era, and their run from Gallery Of Suicide to The Wretched Spawn is solid and engaging. Like them or not, they helped to set the standard. 

I know that it's illogical, my question was rhetorical. My point is that Metallica was both trendsetting and accessible, so their success makes a great deal of sense over other bands in their genre, especially when they sold out and achieved meteoric fame. Where there were earlier bands, better bands (subjectively and objectively), and more influential and accessible death metal bands around the same time, it just boggles my mind that it's Cannibal Corpse that rose up to the surface. Being hard working probably helped, because to this day they tour endlessly, and being "consistent" and not experimenting may have factored in later on. At the beginning though, it had to have been that "fun factor" in both the music and image that drew people in, as well as a great deal of luck. A major movie certainly helped, but it's hard to say if it would be more or less serious exposure than a major label with heavy promotion behind you. If they do have some kind of "it factor" that really snags most people's attention, I guess I just don't hear it. It might be there in addition to the other factors, I'm just surprised that it's Cannibal Corpse that is the household name for death metal and not Deicide (certainly garnering just as much "shock value" attention with Benton's many interviews with evangelists), Morbid Angel, Death (being massively accessible and one of the founders of the genre), or Obituary. 

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14 minutes ago, BlutAusNerd said:

I know that it's illogical, my question was rhetorical. My point is that Metallica was both trendsetting and accessible, so their success makes a great deal of sense over other bands in their genre, especially when they sold out and achieved meteoric fame. Where there were earlier bands, better bands (subjectively and objectively), and more influential and accessible death metal bands around the same time, it just boggles my mind that it's Cannibal Corpse that rose up to the surface. Being hard working probably helped, because to this day they tour endlessly, and being "consistent" and not experimenting may have factored in later on. At the beginning though, it had to have been that "fun factor" in both the music and image that drew people in, as well as a great deal of luck. A major movie certainly helped, but it's hard to say if it would be more or less serious exposure than a major label with heavy promotion behind you. If they do have some kind of "it factor" that really snags most people's attention, I guess I just don't hear it. It might be there in addition to the other factors, I'm just surprised that it's Cannibal Corpse that is the household name for death metal and not Deicide (certainly garnering just as much "shock value" attention with Benton's many interviews with evangelists), Morbid Angel, Death (being massively accessible and one of the founders of the genre), or Obituary. 

Deicide really started to suck for a while, Morbid Angel had some missteps and were more affected by their lineup changes, Death obviously couldn't continue without Chuck, and Obituary fell off in quality and had a pretty lengthy hiatus. Not to mention other objectively deserving bands that weren't as productive or just wrote comparatively impenetrable music. Cannibal Corpse was building more of a following while those bands were either treading water or falling off. So when the DM market picked back up, they were poised to deliver.

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2 hours ago, FatherAlabaster said:

Deicide really started to suck for a while, Morbid Angel had some missteps and were more affected by their lineup changes, Death obviously couldn't continue without Chuck, and Obituary fell off in quality and had a pretty lengthy hiatus. Not to mention other objectively deserving bands that weren't as productive or just wrote comparatively impenetrable music. Cannibal Corpse was building more of a following while those bands were either treading water or falling off. So when the DM market picked back up, they were poised to deliver.

I wouldn't say that any of them gained most of their fans during the creative nadir of death metal, when most bands were wallowing in self-parody or experimenting with various failures. All of them rose to prominence around the same time, but maybe nobody noticed the self-parody in the Cannibal Corpse camp because they started that way. All of them endured through the late 90's and early 00's mostly because of those classic albums, no matter how good some later efforts (like Formulas Fatal to the Flesh) might have been. I know that album sales have probably varied, but I've read that Cannibal Corpse's has stayed relatively consistent, possibly because they've never done anything out of the ordinary and that's what their fans want...

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On 9/5/2017 at 4:23 PM, BlutAusNerd said:

I know that it's illogical, my question was rhetorical. My point is that Metallica was both trendsetting and accessible, so their success makes a great deal of sense over other bands in their genre, especially when they sold out and achieved meteoric fame. Where there were earlier bands, better bands (subjectively and objectively), and more influential and accessible death metal bands around the same time, it just boggles my mind that it's Cannibal Corpse that rose up to the surface. Being hard working probably helped, because to this day they tour endlessly, and being "consistent" and not experimenting may have factored in later on. At the beginning though, it had to have been that "fun factor" in both the music and image that drew people in, as well as a great deal of luck. A major movie certainly helped, but it's hard to say if it would be more or less serious exposure than a major label with heavy promotion behind you. If they do have some kind of "it factor" that really snags most people's attention, I guess I just don't hear it. It might be there in addition to the other factors, I'm just surprised that it's Cannibal Corpse that is the household name for death metal and not Deicide (certainly garnering just as much "shock value" attention with Benton's many interviews with evangelists), Morbid Angel, Death (being massively accessible and one of the founders of the genre), or Obituary. 

Don't forget they were a prime target for censorship having some banned album covers and at that time was there any better form of hype and promotion than censorship? That contributed to the lore of the band and legitimized them in the process because going to extremes regarding subject matter and imagery was part of the attraction people had to death metal music even if it was done with fun in mind.

 

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I'll give you an excellent example for why Cannibal Corpse became the marquee band for death metal. 

Let me take you back to 1994. At 14 years old, we were all moving from gateway bands into 'real' metal, yet much of it was cloaked by mystique in this pre-internet world.

I was a naive yet attractive young man, full of vim and vigour, sitting in a high school class somewhere in South-Eastern Australia. Naturally, I was sitting next to a fellow metal fan - a kid called Hackers. Hackers wasn't exactly part of the inner-circle, but he was a guy we liked well enough, and I even formed a black metal band with him for a few months, with me on the drums if you can believe it. Hackers was probably pound for pound the best guitarist in school but a bit of a dork. 

Anyway, I remember being in class with Hackers (he was on my right) and he leans over and says something like, "There's this song by Cannibal Corpse that starts with a guy saying this: 'recites verbal intro to Addicted to Vaginal skin'". I go, "What the hell did I just hear??" A vagina was exotic and topical enough without the added imagery of consuming one as foodstuffs. 

So at recess everyone's talking about this band that we had previously only vaguely heard of called Cannibal Corpse and the intro to 'Addicted to Vaginal Skin'. I think Hackers had it on a Sony Walkman or something because we all listened to it. We stared at each other, amazed that the world could produce something so disgusting, so bewildering. It was a brave new world for us all. 

So while Morbid Angel may have offered great songwriting and kvlt kredibility, it was Cannibal Corpse and their over-the-top approach that made the teenagers of the world, and probably Jim Carrey, pay attention back in 1994. 

This post is dedicated to Hackers who, I found out a few years ago, died of a brain tumour. RIP Hackers. We'll be playing black metal in hell soon enough brother. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

I am late to this one (as usual) and whilst I agree with the opinions that highlight the lack of variety in their sound there's still been some perfectly respectable tracks come from out of the CC camp to my ears.  "Beyond The Cemetary", "From Skin To Liquid" (the only decent track on "Gallery Of Suicide") and "Festering In The Crypt" all spring to my mind immediately.

I havent always liked them, their albums in the main are too long for the level of variation they disclose and I don't think that helps.  When they are off they are way off ("Gallery Of Suicide") but when they hit form they have been more than capable of going on a run of good albums ("Eaten Back To Life", "Butchered At Birth" through "Tomb Of The Mutilated").

Yep my expectations of them aren't stratospheric (with a music library full of the likes of Portal, Gorguts and Ulcerate I sometimes need that surety/safety of consistency to balance me).  I just enjoy their sound, find their "tongue in cheek" approach to lyrics and artwork amusing and I am looking forwards to their next release.

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  • 4 weeks later...
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I was listening to Gallery of Suicide and it dawned to me by track 4 that Cannibal Corpse is for the most part really, really, boring.  They have some OK songs but overall most of their albums are just tedious.  There's not even fun riffs or headbangy bits.  It's just a kind of mindless plod.

And not just this album - I think nearly all their albums have a couple of moments of interesting and then a lot of tedium.  Even Bleeding or Kill are like this.

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