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Gorguts - From Wisdom To Hate (9/10) - Canada - 2001

Genre: Death Metal
Label: Olympic Recordings
Playing time: 40:41
Band homepage: Gorguts

Tracklist:

  1. Inverted
  2. Behave Through Mythos
  3. From Wisdom To Hate
  4. The Quest For Equilibrium
  5. Unearthing The Past
  6. Elusive Treasures
  7. Das Martyrium Des
  8. Testimonial Ruins
Gorguts - From Wisdom To Hate
Ahhhhh yes, GORGUTS, the band I always love to tell my relatives I like! If you were anywhere in the vicinity of the Planet Metal when "Obscura" was released, you'd know that GORGUTS broke ALL the rules on that album, crafting an almost impossible-to-conceive offering that the music world had never been subjected to before. It saw the band introducing large quantities of guitar scrapes and shrieks and squeals, sounding like beleaguered screams from a parallel dimension, intertwined in an endless fray of idiosyncratic riffs that simply cannot be classified as "this" or "that". I still can't figure out if I like that album or not, its intangible character is so dreadfully difficult to pin down that I have trouble bringing myself to listen to it, just soooooo much to take in! I long for something slightly less heart-attack-inducing...

Enter "From Wisdom To Hate"...

From the opening seconds of "Inverted", I knew this would be the predecessor (You sure you don't mean successor??? - Alex) to "Obscura" that I had hoped for: less frenetic, more focused and more precise in its ultimate goal. Where "Obscura" shot at you from a thousand different directions at once, this album hits you square between the eyes with one single thread of light. Still remaining are the guitar psycho-scrapes from Luc Lemay and newly-acquired axeman Daniel Mongrain (who also plays in the ultra-tech band MARTYR), but they have been more skilfully interspersed between the bodies of the main riffs. Where the shrieks and odd harmonics were the armour of the riffs on "Obscura", now they are the supporting skeletal structure, the foundation, not as obvious and up-front, did that make any sense? Am I crazy? Is this me typing? Who are you, and what have you done with Gabe?

Don't mistake my words as being indicative of GORGUTS becoming complacent, they are still as crazy as ever. Check out any song and tell me that's not some sick guitar shit! True it is much less spastic and indefinable as aforementioned album, but that's not to say it's any less bludgeoning. The real difference, guitar-wise, is in the chords, they are allowed to breathe a lot more, because of the toned-down pace of the songs. Luc seems to have got it in his head that a strummed chord can sound just as good as "sq-squanjuh-REE-klunk... baddabaDABOOM-SQUEAK-HISS-hiss... duggaduggaDA-duh-DAduggaDADADADA...etc".

The element of "control" has wisely been added, and now I can happily declare that I LOVE that first riff on "Inverted" that goes "BA da duh buh doo WEE NEER duh (repeat)". Dare I say it "grooves"?! Okay, GORGUTS has NOT gone PANTERA on us, but yes, it does have a kind of "groove" to it. It could be dance club music, if you think about it...one would just have to be in VERRRRYYYY good shape is all, and donning a heat-seeking missile up the anus...

Okay, so either you think I'm a bit of a mental case or you somehow can "understand" my way of explaining things here? The whole point, I guess, is that it's not all meant to be understood, GORGUTS is about destroying those egocentric barriers we keep up that help us decide what our ears should be hearing. They're about inner exploration through music, and this album, to me, is like a feather that somehow followed a straight-line path down through the Great Red Spot of Jupiter (ie "Obscura") and found its essence at the core. The Well of Knowledge has been tapped!

Hmmm, I suppose now would be a good time to warn you that this album should not be listened to while watching the Simpsons episode where Homer eats the Guatemalan insanity pepper and meets the space-coyote (see: above review).

Gabriel Gose



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