Cryptopsy - The Unspoken King
Century Media
11 songs (47:07)
Release year: 2008
Cryptopsy, Century Media
Reviewed by Goat
Crap of the month



Cryptopsy, Cryptopsy, Cryptopsy.

Seriously, what in the name of fuck? This is a band like none other in the Death Metal scene. This band released None So Vile. This band had a frontman that ate worms, let alone sounding like a demon-possessed wolfhound with rabies. This band has not released two albums that sound similar. Here, was a band – a group that worked together to produce a sound that cliché or no, was a train crash set to music, a wild, insane ride that was about as thrilling and damn dangerous as extreme music can get. OK, so Whisper Supremacy and And Then You’ll Beg weren’t quite as good as the Lord Worm albums, but they were still a mile above the competition. And then...

Things were going well. Worm was back in the fold, people were excitedly awaiting the follow-up to the excellent Once Was Not. Then Lord Worm left, whether it really was for health reasons or he was pushed, who knows? Either way, letting him go was the worst mistake that a band made since Anthrax fired John Bush. The result? The worst album that Cryptopsy could possibly have made, the absolute bottom of the pile.

The Unspoken King is an unsettling experience. It is literally like listening to a Deathcore band trying and failing to replicate Whisper Supremacy. The production turns the backing music into a morass, with the bass coming through clearest, but even that has the most godawful, twangiest sound you’ve ever heard. OK, so Cryptopsy has never been masters of production, but even the usual ‘loud vocals and drums’ approach would have been better than this. The guitars are noise, the drums are buried – it’s a mess. What’s more, the music is nowhere near as intense and technical as before. Where once the band would have created something complex and interesting, now we get mosh riffing and ambient ‘experimental’ parts, not to mention McGachy’s clean singing, which is really, really, truly awful.

Bemoan The Martyrs is the first indication that something’s gone truly wrong. Up until then, it’s just sounded like a below-par attempt at Death Metal, but here, the whiny vocals, pointless blasting and almost inaudible screechy keyboard melody in the background are just dreadful. Do yourself a favour: get out Once Was Not and listen to The Pestilence That Walketh In Darkness. This is what Cryptopsy was trying to replicate on Bemoan The Martyrs, starting catchy yet building up into chaos. It’s quite, quite stunning just how much of a failure this was, and yet the album gets even worse afterwards.

The very next track, Leach, opens with someone shouting ‘one, two, three’ and launching into sub-Trivium Modern Thrash riffing, with McGachy’s growls barely letting up. Then, more awful clean vocals. There’s piano in Contemplate Regicide, completely out-of-place and bizarrely ham-fisted after the perfectly placed Classical sections in Once Was Not.

What makes this an especial tragedy is that there are promising moments here. Anoint The Dead is fast and brutal, with some decent attempts at technicality compared to the rest of the album. Resurgence Of An Empire could have been good in the hands of another vocalist, without the clean parts especially. You can see how this was designed as a sequel to Once Was Not, and can even imagine Worm as a vocalist over it. What’s more, despite the tidal wave of shit aimed at him over the blogosphere, Flo’s drumming is the one good thing about the album. No, it’s not as diverse and mind-rapingly skilful as before, but it is still the work of an excellent drummer, albeit one given few chances to shine.

If you’ve never heard Technical Death Metal of the traditional sort before, and have been steeped in Deathcore, then chances are that you’ll love this. You’ll cheer the badly formed chaos, you’ll gasp at the generic keyboards, and you’ll mosh your little hearts until they explode. Yet if you’ve heard Cryptopsy, or even usual Death Metal before, then yes, The Unspoken King is as bad as you’ve heard. Don’t even bother trying to fathom it out; you’ll get caught up, desperately trying to convince yourself that you just heard something that makes it worth continuing with, just in case Flo Mournier really is a misunderstood genius and we really aren’t open-minded enough… no, that’s rubbish, don’t bother. Whether you want to hysterically accuse Cryptopsy of selling out or not, the fact remains that this is a dreadful attempt at modernisation from a band that really should know better.

People, honestly. Your humble correspondent listens to more Death Metal than most, and is perfectly entitled to inform you that there are many, many bands out there that are genuinely advancing the genre, and the vast majority of them manage to sound good at the same time. Even if, like me, you own all of Cryptopsy’s other albums, do not buy The Unspoken King. Save your money for those that deserve it.

Killing Songs :
Anoint The Dead, for lack of anything else
Goat quoted 19 / 100
Adam quoted 10 / 100
James quoted 38 / 100
Other albums by Cryptopsy that we have reviewed:
Cryptopsy - The Book of Suffering - Tome II (EP) reviewed by Goat and quoted no quote
Cryptopsy - The Book of Suffering – Tome 1 (EP) reviewed by Goat and quoted no quote
Cryptopsy - Cryptopsy reviewed by Bar and quoted 73 / 100
Cryptopsy - None So Live reviewed by Goat and quoted no quote
Cryptopsy - None So Vile reviewed by Goat and quoted CLASSIC
To see all 10 reviews click here
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