General Surgery: Like an Ever Flying Limb

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General Surgery: Like an Ever Flying Limb
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General Surgery: Like an Ever Flying Limb
Death Metal, Goregrind
Relapse Records
October 31st, 2012
Release length:
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Sweden’s General Surgery storm back into the sights of Death Metal and Goregrind fans alike once more with their latest effort, Like an Ever Flying Limb. Ever since reforming around the turn of the century, this group has been hard at work, issuing new material in various forms like split, demo, and even full-length recordings. It’s been a few years since their second album, Corpus in Extremis[: Analysing Necrocriticism, as well as their latest compilation titled A Collection of Depravation both hit store shelves, but that doesn’t stop the band from killing a few years of silence with five brand new recordings. But, do these songs make this General Surgery effort one that becomes a must own for lovers of the Goregrind genre? Or, if this just a bland, stereotypical mess?

One of the things going for this release is definitely the audio quality. Like an Ever Flying Limb may be a recent digital production, but it’s not afraid to get its hands filthy. The guitars have a stronger, deeper tuning, as well as a loud distortion that is rather common for the Goregrind sound, complimented nicely by the deeper bass guitar that stands apart from it’s electric counterparts. The drums also sound rich, especially in the deeper snares with tight or booming output, all the way to the clicking of the bass kicks against the crisp crashes of the cymbals. Finally, there’s the vocal performance, which often is a varied guttural or higher rhasp, though it’s more the first of the two for the main verses. Either way, both carry quite the bite, and help to cement this throwback to the early Goregrind era perfectly.

With a great audio quality at work, it’s also fantastic to hear the energy that each member incorporates into the album, making almost every track a headbang worthy bludgeoning that you’ll enjoy as much as the band clearly did recording them. “Like an Ever Flying Limb” just erupts with with fury, though it slightly stifles after a brief sound effect of what is a squirting artery, or perhaps even a heart. Blistering blastbeats hammer away at the listener, though this time a bit higher in pitch that does lose a bit of its blunt edge, and eventually gives way to a mid-tempo Swedish Death Metal groove that is unmistakably addicting. Things end on a similar note with “Dark Cyanotic Hypostasis,” easily the best off the EP. After another spoken word audio sample, this time discussing the changes in a living being’s cells as “death,” things do quickly build with held guitar notes and squeeling from sliding up the neck of the guitar, causing distortion as well before slamming right into blastbeat fueled fury backed by the varied rhaspy and guttural vocal performances. This leads to uncontrollable urges to both bang your head along, and/or even mosh along to the rich musical intensity.

But, while “Dark Cyanotic Hypostasis” may be the best, there’s still two other great songs to go off and enjoy, jumping between the heavier faster paces, and, in the case of “Ejected Viscous Mucus,” some of the catchiest, if not more crushing groovey Death Metal chords the recording has to offer. The only gripe about all of this is that the song “Seizures” is included amid everything, kind of ruining the flow of the album. This one definitely plays off the Grindcore aspect more than anything, using some of the fastest bass kicks available on the recording, sticking to that simple formula for a little over forty seconds. While this is more than a welcome shift at the half-way point, a little more substance would have been nice given that four of the five songs here were designed to be the regular length of a song.

If you love the early days of Goregrind, then General Surgery should be a band you’re already familiar with. If not, then you definitely have missed out on a great Swedish gem. There’s no time like the present to make yourself familiar with this group, as Like an Ever Flying Limb packs some fantastic Swedish Death Metal laced with a sickening, vile Goregrind sound that’s still heavy and energetic with todays crisp, somewhat cleaner audio production. General Surgery continue to compose love letters to the early days of splatter that clearly birthed and evolved from through the years, and with this brand new EP, the impact and nostalgia have never been better.

01. Like an Ever Flying Limb – 2:26
02. Ejected Viscous Mucus – 2:45
03. Seizures – 0:41
04. Rhythmic Epidermal Clamor – 1:23
05. Dark Cyanotic Hypostasis – 3:36
Initial Pressing Score: 9/10
General Surgery (band)
General Surgery
Digital review copy of this release provided by Relapse Records.