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Gnaw Their Tongues - The Cessation Of Suffering review

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Band: Gnaw Their Tongues
Album: The Cessation Of Suffering
Release date: November 2023

01. Dreamless
02. The Veneer
03. Salvation Body
04. The Cessation Of Suffering
05. Mensenlucht
06. Vengeful Spit
07. Met Huid En Haar
08. Throatrot
09. The Departure Of Light
10. Messen

Through the filthy lenses of black metal, death industrial and noise, Gnaw Their Tongues molds and twists itself to accurately portray mankind’s vile nature. There have been many adjustments in sound over the past decade. Despite the finality implied by the title, The Cessation Of Suffering revitalizes the project with rich compositions and inspiring arrangements.

I’ll be honest with you: I’m still very partial to the project’s stream of releases from 2006 to 2012. Back then, Gnaw Their Tongues was at its most cinematic and had plenty of neoclassical undertones amidst the horrific black noise. The music breathed nauseating horror and elegance all at once. Kickstarting with 2015’s Abyss Of Longing Throats, Mories began to add new elements to re-invent his long-living project, twitching with the production and layering to incorporate more and more electronic elements like death industrial and noise, to the point of erasing virtually all black metal influences. I personally don’t feel he landed on a solid formula until the release of the 2020 album, I Speak The Truth, Yet With Every Word Uttered, Thousands Die. Its clinical, cold production greatly enhanced the harsher mechanical sounds, and helped form an infectious and filthy atmosphere that felt most physical. At the time, I thought that was the best work he had unleashed to the public since the maniacal Eschatological Scatology in 2012.

Now three years have passed, which is the longest period in between full-lengths so far. With the previous album, Mories found a great balance of sounds, textures and arrangements. As you can imagine, my expectations were rather high. Does Mories have anything else to say to a world so vile and impure?

Hell yeah, he does! For starters, The Cessation Of Suffering has impeccable production. The harsh noise elements are at the front to keep you at the edge of your seat, while the disgusting shrieks and howls serve well in the background for that special “hiding in the basement but it has found me” level of terror. The use of keyboards is much more prominent and it adds a touch of neoclassical that calls back to the project’s first albums; “Salvation Body” and “Vengeful Spit” are good examples of this, with the former having this mournful piano on top of the disturbing chaos, while the latter has a bone-chilling organ that contracts perfectly with some of the most harrowing screams that Mories has let out in his career.

Despite how unsettling this ordeal can be, I feel an underlying sense of loss, disappointment and sadness that really takes a hold on you throughout the album, and this is thanks to the wonderful work behind the keyboards. But then the rage takes over with tracks like “Mensenlucht” and “Met Huid En Haar”, which really set the tone for an impending massacre. I also want to highlight the last two tracks, which are a good combo finisher to leave you bleeding in the moonlight. The stop-and-go approach of “The Departure Of Light” is nothing short of unnerving and the sorrowful, doomy tone of “Messen” is the final nail in the coffin.

There are many ideas behind each track, but they are never overused or get stale, and with an average length of 3.5 minutes, you definitely get the most out of each song. I think the short track lengths are better suited for what Gnaw Their Tongues is currently delivering. Perhaps the short and direct style of Mories' analogue power electronics project Offerbeest had something to do with this?

It was a wise decision for Mories to take some time off his biggest project. The Cessation Of Suffering delivers spiritual torture galore and re-inforces Gnaw Their Tongues’ place in the annals of extreme music.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 9
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 8
Production: 9

Written on 26.11.2023 by A lazy reviewer but he is so cute you'd forgive him for it.


Comments: 2   Visited by: 73 users
26.11.2023 - 08:32
Rating: 7
A Nice Guy
It's an interesting album indeed. I've only skimmed through their discography briefly leading up to this release as it's very extensive. So I kinda had a gist of what to expect from this, and suspected I would struggle to get into it tbh, but I'm actually pleasantly surprised, as noise/drone is not at all my usual style.

There's definitely something oddly satisfying about it, for me it sounds like a bunch of angry demons trapped inside your head, I imagine it must be how a very bad trip on acid, or a severe schizophrenic episode must feel like. I feel like it's something I can only listen to on certain occasions though to fully appreciate it.
12.01.2024 - 13:46
delicious dish
I finally got around to it and I have to say... I really want to like it but by god the harsh noise dominates the album so much that I cannot listen to it with headphones on, it actively hurts. Which sucks cause that's the way I consume music most often and I don't have great speakers on practically anything. And while that can of course be part of the appeal of something as abrasive as GTT, it's something that really makes it hard for me to engage with it. I adore the contrast on tracks like "Salvation Body", shame.
You are the hammer, I am the nail
building a house in the fire on the hill

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