Monday, June 3, 2013
Death - Leprosy (1988)
I have to say, as sick and innovative as Death were in those days, I was always more into other shit like the early albums by Obituary, Carcass, Napalm Death and Bolt Thrower. Hell, I even thought the first Deicide album utterly decimated Death! Sure, they might have been the first "legitimate" death metal band (for my money, Possessed was and will always be a thrash metal band, despite having a song entitled 'Death Metal') but I preferred the work of others at that time. This is not to say that I absolutely did not like Death, but I certainly were not on their dick like seemingly everyone else. Shit, to this day everyone stumbles over themselves to jump on Chuck's long rotten, maggot-filled cock. Sorry folks. Death just never really did it for me and this album I thought was the weakest out of the "classic era".
First off, the riffs are just plain fucking boring. I'm not against straightforwardness, but this is \practically mindless. There are a couple of winners here and there such as 'Primitive Ways' and 'Left Behind' but the majority of this album is unbelievably pedestrian with a majority of the songs dragging along on crutches to get to the other side of the street.
The drumming is hilariously uninventive but unfortunately the humorous aspects give way to tedious predictability and soon after I find myself just plain annoyed with it all.
The guitar duo of Chuck and Rick Rozz is quite the anomaly as Chuck's lead style is pristine and very classy while Rick's whammy bar retardation is second to none.
The only thing on this album that has stood out for me and deserves perhaps more credit than it's ever gotten, especially these days, are the vocals. Chuck took what Becerra was doing in Possessed and improved upon them. Chuck's vocals here are significantly ghastly and his diction is on point, which to me is of the utmost importance. Not enough death metal vocalists have such clarity, which is what gives the lyrical content that extra shock value. When all you hear is a constant flow of "ree-ree-ree-ree" the subject matter, literally, gets lost in translation. Here, and on just about every death album (at least up until 'Symbolic') Chuck's pronunciation and delivery overall takes what is in my opinion a painfully average recording and puts it over the top. Honestly, if it wasn't for his vocal performance, I would have forgotten this album altogether.