Epic. Grandiose. Powerful. SEPTIC FLESH’s The Great Mass sweeps away the overwhelming majority of metal with its colossal art. The band describe themselves as “symphonic death metal,” but that really doesn’t convey just how great they are. The album is an experience more than it is simply a collection of excellent music.
Sonically, there are just so many different elements that compose the album. Vocally, you have hellish, deep death metal growls, clean vocals (both male and female) as well as choirs. The metal component is composed of invincible guitar melodies, clean guitars, distorted guitars/bass, a healthy variety of rhythmic diversity, and brutality. The band can blast with and be as brutal as any of their peers but that is just one dimension to their sound. Most of all, the grandiose sounds of a full orchestra provides the epic and decadent feel. There’s nothing quite like hearing pianos, horns, stringed instruments, and operatic choirs conjuring up the atmosphere.
Structurally, The Great Mass is very dynamic. The level of sophistication and craftsmanship in the songwriting/arrangements is rarely matched in extreme metal. The orchestral and vocal choir arrangements play an integral role in the songs yet never overpower the metal elements of SEPTIC FLESH nor the song itself. Yes, SEPTIC FLESH easily make DIMMU BORGIR seem tame in this aspect. The Great Mass is on par with a movie or neo-classical score.
The bottom line is that these Greek gods have created a masterpiece. The passion, soul, and flawless execution cannot be denied. Any darling of the metal media world would be hard pressed to create a comparable work. All hail SEPTIC FLESH! (Season of Mist)