CD Review: Six Feet Under – Undead

Six Feet Under, UndeadMetal’s Cookie Monster returns on Six Feet Under’s latest Undead, which hits stores on May 22. The CM vocal technique made famous by the Florida death metal band, is strong and proud throughout, as is a killer musical background that will remind fans of the brutal energy and excitement of the first couple albums. For Six Feet Under it’s about brutal attack rather than speed, so expect some groove tracks and a lot of mid-tempo work, although the band can thrash it out with the best of them, like they do in the lead track Frozen At The Moment Of Death.

The album continues with its main focus point, the riff driven Formaldehyde, which runs well under three minutes. In fact, none of the songs on the album make it to four minutes – the band has kept it short and to the point with each track, giving it a punkier attitude and averaging two and a half to three minutes per song.

The guitars are punchy and the vocals are front and center, but the drums sound a bit old school with a hollow metalic sound similar to the early Metallica material or more recently, Job For A Cowboy. With that sound, the drums seem to puncture the ears rather than hit them, so it adds to the viciousness of the overall music.

Founder and vocalist Chris Barnes still leads the band, which includes long-time member Steve Swanson on guitar and newer members Rob Arnold on guitar and Kevin Talley on drums. Bassist Matt DeVries appears on the album, but earlier this year he quit and was replaced by Jeff Hughell.

Lyrically,  the album dwells in dark horror and tackles murder, death, aggression and even sadness, so it will be familiar to fans as they trudge through the new songs. Highlights include the heavy groove track 18 Days, Formaldehyde, Blood On My Hand and Delayed Combustion Device, which has an extremely memorable chorus.

4 stars
Six Feet Under