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Morbid Angel — Blessed Are the Sick
(Earache MOSH3102, 1991/2009, CD+DVD)

by Mike McLatchey, Published 2016-10-13

Blessed Are the Sick Cover art

McLatchey's Second Tier

Within the death metal genre this is easily considered one of the prime classics, but outside of the field, its high musical pedigree and unusual melodic structures are genuinely lost on most due to the rasping vocals and hilarious grim band photographs. This was back in the day when most of the genre were mostly concerned with Hammer Horror Satanism and these guys were really going for broke in the race to blaspheme and poke at fundamentalist conventions. Depending on who you are, this might make one well nervous or if you're like me, it's all a bit of a joke, kind of like the pimply 17 year old kid with the black jacket trying to make a statement about religion. But the thing is... even though the lyrics are juvenile, the music is always interesting, particularly due to the genre's long seeded way of creating unusual, dissonant harmonies between two guitars and watching the themes develop over numerous and ever-changing timing and pace shifts, often between the kind of riffing you'd hear on an Iron Maiden or Metallica album and the blastbeats and intensity of the new grindcore genre. This was at the beginning of a style that has been going ever since, one perhaps more concerned about an internal purity and allegiance than almost any other I can think of.

Filed under: Reissues, 2009 releases, 1991 recordings

Related artist(s): Morbid Angel

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