SUFFOCATION
"The Close of a Chapter: Live in Quebec City"

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01. Infecting The Crypts
02. Thrones Of Blood
03. Surgery Of Impalement
04. Catatonia
05. Liege Of Inveracity
06. Despise The Sun
07. Subconsciously Enslaved
08. Immortally Condemned
09. Effigy Of The Forgotten
10. Tomes Of Acrimony
11. Breeding The Spawn
12. Pierced From Within
13. Funeral Inception

RATING: 7.5/10

SUFFOCATION represents death metal's mighty roar; everything from Frank Mullen's patented microphone-eating growl to the thick/dry/palm-muted riffs, to the impossibly heavy rhythm section all scream "brutal death!" While clearly evident on the studio recordings, even with a history of uneven productions (save for the last couple of albums), it is the live environment where SUFFOCATION has made a name for itself. Almost across the board, those that have witnessed the New Yorkers on stage have come away with brain matter leaking from the ear canals. "The Close of a Chapter: Live in Quebec City" expertly captures the SUFFOCATION live experience, as well as offering new listeners a career retrospective of sorts.

As live albums go, "The Close of a Chapter" is one of the more entertaining ones I've heard, as well as sounding genuinely live, thanks to a performance that is "raw and unedited." The SUFFOCATION/Joe Cincotta recording of the 2005 performance is of good quality; the sound is fierce and pummeling with good instrument separation. For example, it is great to hear Derek Boyer's bass in the mix, as his low-end duties coupled with Mike Smith's monstrous drumming is paramount to the SUFFOCATION delivery. It probably doesn't need to be stated, but I'll state it anyway; the riffing/solos from Terrance Hobbs and Guy Marchais sound fantastic. In fact, the band as a whole is locked down tight across the entire 64-minute performance. Mullen's between-song banter is always highly energetic and at times downright comedic; you'll be repeating his phrases in faux New York accent, as SUFFOCATION fans are prone to do after an evening spent with the destroyers.

With a set list running the gamut from the ancient ("Catatonia") to the classic ("Pierced from Within" and "Effigy of the Forgotten") to more recent material ("Surgery of Impalement"), "The Close of a Chapter: Live in Quebec City" is a must-buy for fans and a great starting point for new members of the Church.

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