Genre: Death Metal
Country: U.S.A. / Belgium
Label: Morbid Visions Music
Year: 2016

Mark Riddick’s Death Metal music project has given birth to its second full length album “… To The Bone” on June 16th 2016. A collaboration between two widely known artists, Mark Riddick (as already mentioned) who’s known for his gruesome though magnificent artworks and his collaborations with numerous bands (and who’s also a member of Fetid Zombie, Grave Wax and Unburied) and Adrien “Liquifier” Weber (also known as Lord Genocide), who’s worked with Vociferian and Ebauche Noire among other notable bands. Mark handled the entirety of the instruments and orchestration, while “Liquifier” is on vocal duties.

What those guys delivered is a swampy though atmospheric Old School Death Metal, reminiscent of the early 90s era. One can easily realize that in “… To The Bone” there are many good ideas and an adventurous way of composing music. Take for instance the track “Oppression Delegation”. Setting aside the Death Metal aesthetics, the track sounds as if Bay Area’s Forbidden took the musical reins. Generally the music Macabra are offering is unique, with much character in it. Morbid guitars embraced in great proportions by the bass, while the drum patterns are more or less predictable (however they deliver). Occasionally you will find some acoustic guitar passages, some samples creating an eerie atmosphere, some synths and keyboards that add a new layer of mystery to the whole effort. There are many variations in rhythms as well. “… To The Bone” is a well adjusted mixture of slow, mid and fast rhythms. As far as the vocals are concerned, brutality and insanity simultaneously prevail, while musically speaking we’re dealing with classic Death Metal forms and structures, avoiding the unnecessary sophistications and perplexities. Besides, Death Metal can be glorious without complicated compositions.

The only bad thing with “… To The Bone” and, personally a huge turn – off, is the quality of the record’s production. I wanted more depth, the sound to be a bit more massive / cataclysmic and the vocals – instruments in a balanced harmony. I felt that the vocals are way louder mixed than the instruments. It feels like the vocals overlap the music; not always, but it happens way too often.

All in all, Macabra’s second full length album “… To The Bone” is a decent release, targeted to the restrictedly underground Death Metal audience. It’s not for the mainstream ear. Though they’ve managed to meet both the old – school and modern DM criteria, the record’s production is hijacking points from total sum. The record was released via Morbid Visions Music.

4/6