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 Centurian - Contra Rationem (2013) Album Review

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Zodiac : Leo Metal Reputation : 2
Join date : 2012-10-17
Location : Damascus, Syria

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PostCenturian - Contra Rationem (2013) Album Review

Contra Rationem
28th January 2013
Listenable Records

Centurian - Contra Rationem (2013) Album Review 360185

In the years between 1997 and 2002, Centurian pioneered the second wave of Death Metal amongst acts like Krisiun and Angelcorpse. The band played throughout the U.S. and Europe, which granted them with a great underground fan-base and a great reputation due to their persistent songwriting and harsh approach to music. And now with the release of Contra Rationem I must say that Centurian is back, and very furiously, for that matter.

The album starts off with a track entitled “Thou Shalt Bleed For The Lord Thy God” a track which mixes the good old Centurian sound with an innovative approach when it comes to vocals, with just enough brutality to keep everything interesting, a very kick ass starting to a new album.

Then with “Crown of Bones” things definitely take a much better turn, the feel of angst and that DEATH METAL sound excels, especially with that intro effect of what is supposed to be a maggot infected skull being crushed to dust. For a few parts in the song, also throughout the album, you get this sense of Blackened Death Metal being mixed in on there, however what I am not completely satisfied with is the rhythm, it doesn’t have enough variety; it’s stabilized, now I’m not saying that the riffs on there aren’t so damn awesome, I’m just saying that it would’ve been nice to have more of the same song, a little extension, and again with the vocals, this taste of innovation.

“Feast of The Cross” kicks in on the matter and brings your ears back to life.. What absolutely caught my ears are the drums, that cymbal playing and altering is great, all mixed with the kicks, and a taste of old school playing.
The rhythms on that one remind me of an earlier Death sound that isn’t flawed with the mix of newer genres. The solo is quite interesting on that track as well, how everything mixes together into one piece of greatness.

“Judas Among Twelve” is where I went wow, the old school sound in that track just makes everything so revived! It’s like the second wave of Death Metal is being brought to every piece of life there is, the blast-beat driven, thrashy guitar, dirty vocals type of Death Metal, with just a tad of that new sound,
my ears clung on to that track and I had to listen to it a few times in order to get it outta my system, it’s my favorite on this album so far.

“Antinomium” comes along and I’m glad that Centurian didn’t break the laws this time, as heard in the intro to that song.
It slides through neatly, the alteration in guitars fits the whole scheme, as it goes with the vocals again,
An extremely decent track, it’s got proper length and it’s some brutal stuff.

With the start of “The Will Of The Torch” is where I got my appreciation to the efforts again, there’s much to comprehend in that song, and it’s going to be properly understood unless you’re a big death metal fan, especially with that solo that comes out of nowhere and blasts an eargasm.
The background vocals/screams in that song also adds a nice feel to it, along with the guitars shredding it, but again with the rhythm, too stabilized.. A little chaos is required every now and then. But this track definitely sticks out from the rest.

“Sin Upon Man” is the track that I will not say anything about, because frankly it’s just like the others, just as brutal, just as technical, but it has the same feel to everything..

However on the last 2 tracks “Damnatio Memoriae” and “Adversus”, is where I finally managed to go wow again, big time this time, this is where the Blackened Death sound excels again, with might!
“Damnatio Memoriae” starts off with a badass intro, keeps flowing to an approach of blast-beats and death, until the break down and that’s when the music turns blackened, the lead guitarist definitely made a piece of art right there. The vocals are fit to the scenery and the sound alike, especially with that spoken part.

On “Adversus” it goes even darker, granting me with my second favorite track off of the album, everything keeps going back and forth from Black to Death, giving a feel of this brutally dark atmosphere, you don’t know what to expect next, therefore you just keep listening all the way to the end, the drum work is quite good, definitely something to keep your ear on.

All in all this is a very solid piece of Death Metal, interesting and doesn’t bore you out, a taste of the old and the new dwells, quite impressive. However one of the negativities is that the album is too short, I wished it was longer, and a little more varied. Another thing that I found negative was the bass, I could barely hear it throughout the album, and the vocals at some points were louder than everything, the bass just wasn’t given its proper amount of loudness.
But still, this would be a recommendation of mine to every death-head out there, it’s well put together and equally brutal.
Horns up to Centurian for their efforts, and for the multiple eargasms.

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Sam Zamrik
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