Label: Relapse Records
In case you haven’t heard by name, Frank Mullen has decided to leave Suffocation. It was only a matter of time, really. He hadn’t been touring with the band much for several years now, and his next tour with the band will be his last. He’ll be much-missed. Aside from being one of the key vocalists in the development of death metal – any death metal band utilizing lots of growled vocals owes him an immense debt – he was also a genuinely funny presence on-stage. There will always be the studio albums though, and foremost amongst them is Pierced from Within.
Suffocation are the kind of band who, assuming you like their core sound, seemingly can’t produce a bad album; but at the same time, it’s unlikely they’ll ever record something as good as Pierced from Within again. That shouldn’t be held against the band – capturing lightning like this is something most bands won’t ever achieve once in their career. The opening title track in particular is brutal/technical death metal perfection. Hopefully Suffocation will carry on following Frank’s departure – touring vocalist Ricky Myers does an excellent job – but if not, they leave behind records like this that still feel exciting and fresh, even after over 20 years since release.
Pierced from Within can be streamed via Spotify.