It seemed as though this release fell more under the melodic death metal genre. Even though Chuck's vocals were still hoarse, they were still incredibly easy to understand. With this in effect, the throat quality meshed well with the heavy D-tuned guitar riffs. The music was amazingly well concocted. Each track showed such an intelligent portrayal of guitar, leads and drumming. Rhythms were much more musical which really stuck with the listener.
This album contained a much more mature songwriting style than the 3 previous releases. Each guitar riff was entirely unique and innovative. Chuck came up with a whole litany of imaginative songs that were totally captivating. The heavy tremolo picked guitar worked well together alongside the throat outputs. Pretty much all of the songs contain a heavy and distorted guitar though there was an introduction acoustic piece. It was merely more of a segue into a heavier song entitled "Destiny."
It seemed that Chuck was focused on sounding more musical because the majority of guitar parts here show a broader more introspective litany of songwriting. It featured Death's more creative side. The tempos for each song were not explosively fast because the melodic guitar dominated throughout this entire release. Another interesting aspect here is that the bass guitar was wholly audible. This was something that was lacking in prior Death releases. A pretty unique aspect to make note of was that Digiorgio played a fretless bass guitar.
All of the tracks are noteworthy. Some more so than others. I'd have to say that "Trapped In A Corner", "Nothing Is Everything" and "Destiny" were the most appealing songs out of this entire album. The reason was because they seemed to be more technical than the others. It's easy though to grow a liking to this whole album since it was part of Death's most unique outputs. Way more so than their first 3 releases. Many listeners may've held a similar conclusion.
Andy LaRoche's leads were more advanced than Chuck's. His playing was more technical in this department. The sound quality could've been better though Scott Burns did a good job with the mixing. The bass guitar was loud enough so that you could here it alongside the guitars. Just the audio for the guitars could've been louder. They didn't drown the rest of the instruments out. The drums by Hoglan were right on cue with the riffs. Plus they were easier to hear than on previous releases.
Lyrically speaking, Chuck's focus was more on a spiritual aspect for Death. They were entirely original and well thought out. The track "Destiny" gives the listener an idea as to what direction this album portrayed as far as the words go. Death's first 3 releases especially their first focused more on gore. This was a more immature aspect of Death's lyric writing. But this release reflected an incredibly more intelligent approach. No covers here. All of the tracks are originals.
This album was anger fortified though the songs showed a brilliant skill of song/lyric writing by "Evil Chuck." The rhythms reflected an intriguing approach which wasn't as prevalent on the 3 previous releases. The sound quality could've been better but all 40 plus minutes of this album was wholly intriguing, original and imaginative. It remains to be one of my personal favorite releases from Death. Such an inspiration that carried with it a legacy regarding the influence Death's impression had on the metal community.