CARNIFEX are a band who has seemed to grow very fast in popularity. More than likely, you’ve heard of these guys, but if for some reason you haven’t, if you’re a fan of The Black Dahlia Murder and Suicide Silence, you should have no problem getting into this band. Their latest release, Until I Feel Nothing, has its ups and downs, but I do think the band is starting to walk in the right direction.
The album opener “Deathwish” is short but sweet. The whole song is a buildup into a massive breakdown which I wish they would have carried out longer, but I must say, I really dig that breakdown. After hearing “Deathwish”, I was very excited to hear what’s next. Immediately following “Deathwish”, we dive straight into “We Spoke Of Lies” which is ferocious from the get-go. The song very much reminds me of The Black Dahlia Murder with its styling of melodic death metal, but the problem that I soon found out is the riffing has very little variation. I’ve heard it all before. Luckily vocalist Scott Lewis keeps things interesting with his arsenal of screams consisting of raspy highs and deep guttural lows. I like this guy as a vocalist - I think he really has something going on here.
Skipping ahead a tad to song #5, “Creation Defaced” is one of the darkest songs that CARNIFEX has written. In the intro, you might even think Dimmu Borgir for a very brief second, until CARNIFEX comes in pummelling with the chugs, the blastbeats, and the in your face brutality. The structure on “Creation Defaced” is quite solid, the guitar teamwork is the best I’ve heard so far on Until I Feel Nothing and this is a side of CARNIFEX I’d like to see more often.
If you’re looking for action, I’d skip to the last track, “Curse My Name”, which did catch me off guard. This is another very dark CARNIFEX song musically, and from its unrelenting brutality to the hints of extreme black metal, CARNIFEX needs to grow into this sound more in the future. The shred is also present on “Curse My Name”, and the band flawlessly transitions from mid paced mosh metal to blistering blast beats. Good album closer here.
I was a little bummed as the album really drags on with the same bag of tricks. I’m not saying their musicianship isn’t good, because they are a talented band, but Until I Feel Nothing has too many filler songs. I’m not sure how long they were working on this album, but it seems rushed. Drummer Shawn Cameron keeps my interest in tact when the repetitive guitar riffs start to bore me, but again when the band continues to dig into that same bag of tricks, you can only hang on for so long.
I think I need to see this band live. Some buddies of mine said they are awesome live, which will probably change my outlook on everything a bit, but until I do, the studio CARNIFEX just isn’t doing the trick for me. I can’t say I’ve heard every CARNIFEX song out there, but the ones that I have heard like “Hell Chose Me”, “In Coalesce With Filth And Faith”, and a few other choice cuts off their earlier albums were much more memorable than a good majority of this album. Despite these criticisms, I will say that CARNIFEX is better than most deathcore/death metal/whatever you wanna call it bands out there. Not like that’s a big feat at all, but they seem much more genuine than the most of them. They stick out more to me because of their darker and more sinister vision. There are definitely a few select tracks off of this album that I would recommend you at least download, but the full album didn’t wow me as much as I wish it did. They have potential, there’s no doubting that, I just hope they can better themselves by taking risks rather than playing it safe next time around. That’s where they will win.