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3.56 | 12 ratings | 2 reviews
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Album · 2005


1. Luminum (1:45)
2. In the Kingdom Where Everything Dies, the Sky Is Mortal (5:21)
3. Carrionshine (3:22)
4. Adeste Infidelis (4:38)
5. The Curse of the Great (5:21)
6. The Frantic Pace of Dying (4:33)
7. Keeping the Cadaver Dogs Busy (5:58)
8. Angelskingarden (7:07)
9. The Pestilence That Walketh in Darkness (Psalm 91: 5-8) (3:26)
10. The End (2:49)
11. Endless Cemetery (5:20)

Total Time: 49:45


- Lord Worm / vocals
- Alex Auburn / guitars, backing vocals
- Flo Mounier / drums, percussion, backing vocals
- Eric Langlois / bass

About this release

Century Media
October 18th, 2005
Limited edition (10000 copies) comes in an embossed digipack with an entirely
gold-ink-printed booklet.

Thanks to bartosso for the updates


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There once was a fearless band...

Cryptopsy sure can't help but keep testing their fans loyalty. With the only stable element of the band's existence being the drummer, Flo Mounier, upon recording Once Was Not they shed their skin once more by adding a more experimental, jazz-fusion edge to their grind/death metal formula. If that weren't enough, the return of the prodigal filth spewer, Lord Worm, marks a return to more raspy, grindcore vocals and oblique, abstract lyricism. And I'm not gonna lie, all that made me incredibly happy.

The album's sound is modern but quite peculiar and while I really like the way it's produced, I think it might be an acquired taste. The drums are very high in the mix - just behind the vocals - with a strong, punching bass drum and a very organic snare drum and cymbals. Bass and guitars are raw and hidden in the mix, so blast beats tend to drown them out a little bit... but still, I think a perfect balance between organic, brutal sound and selectivity has been achieved here. On Once Was Not Cryptopsy presents some of the most unrestrained songwriting ever heard in deathgrind or death metal in general. The record has a very distinct, surreal atmosphere reminiscent of an acid-fueled trip through a cold, post-apocalyptic landscape where horror and comedy merge into one grotesque amalgam. With the use of jazz-fusion-inspired riffs and clever industrial undertones, the band managed to create nine well-flowing, brutal, wild and unpredictable compositions. The stuff Flo Mounier's doing with his drum-kit is just beyond belief. Brutal, well flowing, jazz-tinged drumming combined with painfully technical and jazzy axe-craft from Alex Auburn make this album a compelling experience. However, combined with rasping and unintelligible yapping by Lord Worm, the music takes on a whole new dimension. It's weirdly organic and surprisingly technical, it's terrifying and mesmerizing in its exotic brutality.

That's a bold album by Cryptopsy and I think one of the most interesting death metal efforts out there. It boasts some of the most well-flowing brutal death metal and it was so far ahead of its time, many people failed to see the glorious triumph of the concept behind it. If you're looking for a different approach to death metal without sacrificing brutality, or just want to see how far one can go with the genre without leaving its boundaries, this album is for you.
Why is it that Canada seems to produce some of the worlds most craziest metal? (Warning...their lead singer eats worms)

Now I've known these guys for a while, and I was aware of what they're like. I kind of liked their attitude towards music, and you can guess what they sound like, but I never really heard a full song from these guys or even a full album, so I thought, what they hey, I might as well get one. And I'm glad I did.

This is a band where either you understand them or don't. Now I understand what their getting at, although it took me a whole album to figure it out. Especially during the start, I was quite perplexed, but after about 5 songs, you finally understand it, and you enjoy what they're doing. I remember thinking "Is this grindcore?...Tech death...avante garde jazz metal? Why does parts remind me of Mr. Bungle? Ok, it's a little bit of everything at times, but underneath the clay of oddness, you get your basic tech death, with more of a death metal style (mainly due to Lord Worm's vocals, which reminds me of Autopsy at times).

The only problem is that at times the complications of the songs can overshadow the meanings and atmopsheres. One of the big highlights of this flaw is the lyrics. I was suprised at how good these lyrics are, and at times they can be heard and used to great affect, but then that gabba parts come in, and Lord Worm just kind of caveman growls them. His vocals are also a bit of a marmite factor. My brother doesn't like his vocals that much, but I kind of do...hence them being marmite. Although I kind of like to think of his lyrics kind of like emotional beat poems, which makes them work better. Apparently this album is also a concept album, and theirs seems to be similar themes throughout, e.g. death, famine, disease, relgion, armageddon etc.

Now musicaly, this album is amazing. A bit too complicated at times, but it adds to the wonder of the album now and then. And also I may like to add that the drumming on this is phenomonal, and is something to really marvel at.

1. Luminum - Nice intro with some cool atmospheric touches. 7/10

2. In The Kingdom Where Everything Dies, The Sky Is Mortal - Pretty killer main riff. Amazing drumming. Great instrumental work. Their is some cool twists and turns throughout. 810

3. Carrionshine - Some of the most extreme drumming I have ever heard. Nice twists and runs and the use of vocals throughout is pretty cool. 9/10

4. Adeste Infidelis - I love the vocals. Especially the narrations in French. Nice guitar work too, and the drumming is just crazy. 9/10

5. The Curse Of The Great - One of the most interesting songs on the album. Great lyrics. I love the doomy death sections. 9/10

6. The Frantic Pace Of Dying - Nice noisy intro. A bit too crazy to be honesy. The ending is pretty cool though. 7/10

7. Keeping The Cadaver Dogs Busy - Nice jazzy intro. Love the main riff. Great instrumental work. This is probabbly one of the most accesible songs on the album. 9/10

8. Angelskingarden - Ok, I have to admit, this is pretty epic, especially the bits with keys. Grear guitar work throughout, and interesting arrangements. Nice lyrics too. 9/10

9. The Pestilence That Walketh In Darkness (Psalm 91: 5-8) - I like the religious aspects of the song. Pretty crazy, but pretty cool too. 8/10

10. The End - Interesting noisy bubbly thingy. 5/10

11. Endless Cemetary - One of the best songs on the album. Great guitar work. The vocals really do shine on this song, and I'm really impressed. 9/10

CONCLUSION: As you can see, no song has really completely jumped out at me and has stuck with me, although moments have come and gone. This is a great album I have to admit. I'm not completelu drawn over, but from a first listen this has suprised me. It takes about 5 hours to set in, but after it, you really enjoyed the experience, and you wouldn't mind going through the whole thing again, to be honest. I'm gonna keep this one for another listen (I usually sell shit albums), and I think by the second time, I'm gonna like it even more. This suprised me...typical crazy Canadians.


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