Corpsessed swim in the stench of death, lean into morbidity on decay-swollen ‘Succumb to Rot’

We’re all going to die, and it’s an inevitability we cannot avoid no matter how hard we try. I don’t know. Why start the week on a good note when so many things have gone to shit? Sometimes it’s better to grasp reality, let it sink into your veins, and go about your business because one day you’re going to be a rotting corpse nourishing the soil.

That dose of glee is on my mind after tackling “Succumb to Rot,” the latest long player from Finnish death horde Corpsessed. Over the course of a decade and a half and four crushing albums, “Succumb” the latest in the line, this band has made the realities of life a little clearer and uglier. The band—vocalist N.M., guitarist J.L., guitarist/backing vocalist M.M., bassist T.K., drummer J-P.M.—spends the better part of these eight tracks and 36 minutes battering you, smartening you to reality, and refusing to pull back from the stench of putrefaction that is your future, like it or not. Well, I don’t know about you, but I sure do need a beer.

The title track gets things going, a quick intro with weird synth, growls lurching in the background, and guitars spreading, loading into “Relentless Entropy” that splits open and wounds right away. Things are heavy and thick with guitars slicing through the center, and an echoed fury carrying into a beastly push that’s sludgy and ugly, ending in a complete bludgeoning. “Death-Stench Effluvium” is a pretty gross concept in and of itself, and the insects buzzing at the outset certainly pay off that reality. Once you dig into the body of the song, it’s puss-filled and mangling with the vocals crushing, the guitars burning and soaring. The drums clash as everything crumbles to the ground, squashing everything in its wake. “Spiritual Malevolence” brings synth heat and then hammering guitars scorching and mauling growls piling on. The murk collects as things feel uncomfortable, fading into a chasm of sounds.

“Calling Void” drill into your chest as the growls retch, and the playing just pounds away. Thrashy hell rears its head, thick basslines coil and strike, and the power gets even more massive, punching out and leaving teeth on the floor. “Sublime Indignation” brings a blinding pace that takes you by surprise, then the growls gurgle and things get ugly in a hurry, the heat intensifying. Hell is unleashed as the guitars mystify, the growls engorge, and the drums go off, dicing and fading into the distance. “Profane Phlegm” lashes with doomy pressure before things get ungodly heavy, growls weighing down on you and causing pain. A strange pall hangs over everything, the power jolts, and the final fumes burn off. “Pneuma Akathartos” closes the album with churning playing and dark cloud cover, collecting before the mauling gets out of hand. The playing trudges with the growls turning uglier, morbidity thickening, and everything slithering into the mouth of hell.

Corpsessed maintain their stranglehold on classic death metal with “Succumb to Rot,” a nasty display that decays from the inside out. They put the screws to you and grind your flesh with great precision, dragging you into the most horrifying elements of reality. It’s a punishing album that solidifies their standing as one of death metal’s most destructive bands.

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