Here we have one of those bands that people seem to either love or hate. San Diego’s Cattle Decapitation is back with their seventh album, “Monolith Of Inhumanity.” Cattle Decapitation is known for protesting the mistreatment and consumption of animals and several band members are vegetarian. Albums like “To Serve Man” and “Humanure” turn the table on humans, putting them in the same position we put certain tasty animals. I assume this it to remind us of “do unto others as you would have them do to you” and shame us into not eating animals. I can get behind ethical treatment of animals, but as yet I am still a carnivore, so listening to Cattle Decapitation has not always been high on my to-do list. With that said I find it exceedingly difficult to find any fault with “The Carbon Stampede.”
Labeled as deathgrind, Cattle Decapitation’s music is not for the faint of heart, no matter your eating habits. To be honest I really have not listened to the band since their third album. When doing metal this extreme I feel you need to have top notch production to keep the mix from becoming a noisy mess, and their earlier material did not pull that off. “Monolith of Inhumanity”, however, has excellent production and provides enough separation between the tracks that one can make out the different elements that combine to form one hell of a brutal album.
The music is unrelentingly fast and heavy, yet still manages to throw the listener nuggets of melodic guitar work. The vocals tend to be harsher than harsh, but sound incredible thanks to the great mixing. There are various shades of harsh vocal, and even some that are almost clean. Clean vocals seem like they would not make sense with this band, but the little they use does not offend my sensibilities. “Lifestalker” has some clean-ish background ethereal vocals, but then “Do Not Resuscitate” gets back on solid harsh vocal ground again. “Your Disposal” and “Kingdom of Tyrants” go even further into clean vocal territory, but are balanced out with lots of harsh vocals too.
Lately, my go-to extreme metal album has been Job For A Cowboy’s “Demonocracy” but I think “The Carbon Stampede” might just pull ahead of them for those it-has-to-be-loud-and-it-has-to-be-crushing moments. Both albums come to us courtesy of Metal Blade, so somebody is doing something right over there. Check out the track “A Living, Breathing Piece of Defecating Meat” below.