Album Review: Viscera - Carcinogenesis
Reviewed by Liam Barlow
There are not many bands that make you instantly reply to a list when you see their name, and in full capitals just email back “YES *INSERT BAND NAME HERE* GIVE ME THAT” … Well Carcinogenesis by Viscera made me do just that.
Viscera are a band I've followed since their formation in 2019, having been a fan of the likes of Heart of a Coward and Martyr Defiled for many years, who they boast ex-members of, and have seen them live a couple of times, most recently on the Decapitated x Despised Icon tour in Birmingham in November of last year, so I couldn’t wait to get a preview of the new album and give it my thoughts!
We kick in with the title track of the album Carcinogenesis, which looks like such a mouthful to say, but as soon as Jamie bellows out the words after the atmospheric intro comes to its conclusion, it just becomes a roll-of-the-tongue word, which is clean to say (go on say it out loud). I am a firm believer that title tracks of albums should fully put into perspective what you're going to get with a release, just shortened and contained into one song, and you get that on this song – the element of modern metal, the popularity of new age deathcore, a brilliant sweeping guitar solo and blast beats. Honestly what more do you want?!
Rats with Wings is a track I can’t help but admire, without trying to not to call the song Pigeon, the quite frankly massively layered vocal chorus on this brings another piece to this already masterful puzzle of an album which is unfolding. As this track progresses the vocal range truly is on show, we’re treated to another beautifully written solo too.
Layers of Skin begins with a wonderfully heavy guitar riff, those of which Gojira would be appreciative of, with added harmonic pitch slide too, and as the song kicks through and we get to chorus one, that modern metal element makes its return once more, before blast beating back into verse two and continues throughout. I’m seriously loving the structure of these tracks. Commence uncontrollable headbanging.
As we progress through Resolver and then Omnipotence, we’re treated to songs that really show off the capability of the guitarists in this band, playing through different technique and styles very elegantly, once again accompanied by the brilliance of the drummer who is more than happy to accent them with his quick hand style, and the offbeat breakdowns, which just hit different.
Sungazer is next, and Jamie Graham once again shows off his commanding presence as a vocalist, dictating the song with his ranged vocal style. The chorus on this one is HUGE, and I had to use caps there to just try and push my point across, were treated to it a few times too, and each times seem to just hit even harder. Scenes of myself stood in a festival field after a few beers singing this one loudly are quite easy and vivid to imagine.
Any song which uses a pinch harmonic within the first literal second of a song has my vote from the outset, and that’s exactly what Lex Talionis does! This one is a fast song, dominated by insane fret works by the guitarists and dominated by blast beats and double peddle from the drummer. By this point I’m already rating this album top marks.
Demon Queen is another atmospheric journey of a song, the build up of the song is something I really enjoyed, before going into an all-out frenzy, and then back into the build. Honestly I know ive said this a lot in this piece, but Jamie’s vocal range really is one to be admired.
We finish with a long piano intro with the brilliantly named On Earth as it is in Hell, before the instrumentation comes back in, and the album concludes on a song which, in part, reminds me a lot of the likes of Daylight Dies by Killswitch Engage, layered vocal techniques, big guitar work and once again, the commanding drums. Very impressive song which brings this album to its conclusion.
Solid and unquestionable, any modern deathcore fan who also appreciates the different layers of metal should check this out!