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Heartwork - Carcass

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Genre: Hard Rock & Metal - Death Metal / Artist: Carcass / Audio CD released 2004-07-06 at Earache

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      12.04.2008 23:15
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      Carcass' fourth album (1993).

      'Heartwork' has always been a significant album for me, as it was the first death metal album I ever bought, but over time my increased familiarity with the genre has only led me to respect and enjoy it a lot less. The primary reason this album isn't as good as its predecessor is that it effectively represents the point at which Carcass sold out; not in the way Metallica's bland "black" album or Judas Priest's disco abomination 'Turbo' sold out by seeking a mainstream radio audience outside of heavy metal, but taken proportionally within the band's own context, they lose all their uncompromising, underground credibility here by giving in to that compromise.

      'Heartwork' is widely acclaimed as a melodic death metal classic, which I suppose it is, as far as any work of a sub-genre could be accurately considered "a classic." It's certainly not as significant as their previous releases, especially 'Necroticism' which struck a much more satisfying balance between heaviness and melody, but this came along at the right time and had the right level of publicity to alert death metal fans to this new trend, which was mainly brewing in Sweden. Consequently, the main offender here is the Liverpool band's Swedish axeman Michael Amott, whose melodic guitars and slower riffing style rob this album of its intensity in favour of polished precision.

      There are still plenty of enjoyable songs here, but most of them are spoiled to some extent by inserting inappropriate melodic elements for no real reason other than to show off the contrast. Even the vocals are less interesting now, handled by Jeff Walker alone and losing the crowded, schizophrenic fun of the earlier albums, with the lyrics now being more intentionally "mature," concerning politics and philosophy rather than gruesome medical tales. When I was younger, the staccato riffs of 'Blind Bleeding the Blind' and classic metal soloing of 'Carnal Forge' seemed like the coolest thing I'd ever heard. Now, it's all pretty bland.

      1. Buried Dreams
      2. Carnal Forge
      3. No Love Lost
      4. Heartwork
      5. Embodiment
      6. This Mortal Coil
      7. Arbeit Macht Fleisch
      8. Blind Bleeding the Blind
      9. Doctrinal Expletives
      10. Death Certificate

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  • Product Details

    Disc #1 Tracklisting
    1 Buried Dreams
    2 Carnal Forge
    3 No Love Lost
    4 Heartwork
    5 Embodiment
    6 This Mortal Coil
    7 Arbeit Macht Fleisch
    8 Blind Bleeding the Blind
    9 Doctrinal Expletives
    10 Death Certificate
    11 This Is Your Life [*]