The overall tone of this latest Ulcerate release certainly matches it’s title rather well. The record feels very bleak, as it’s post-metal infused death metal manages to offer something of a dystopian void. If there was ever a nihilistic sentiment, it could be found within this experience. Now I will state that the frontman is utilizing at least in some nodes an approach that is not far from the grunts of hardcore and deathcore but these core elements are coupled with enough ear-shattering death metal to go almost unnoticed to the untrained ear. However, the internet has exposed me to an increasingly large amount of hardcore, metalcore and deathcore that seem to still be all the rage and this record seems like it could fit in rather well there, once again going mostly unnoticed to the untrained ear.
Stare Into Death… feels like the kind of album where songs simply bleed into each other, creating what feels like one extremely long performance. Though weighty, this can come off a bit boring, unless you’re just looking for something excruciatingly dark and heavy. It is this kind of album that turned me off Ulcerate on the first time through as everything just kind of went in one ear and out the other. Yet I’ve read high praise for this from other colleagues and find myself ultimately confused as to why this is being called their album of the year thus far. There isn’t much else I have to say about it, other than that fact that it felt ultimately mechanical and a bit lifeless. The record is certainly heavy, but maybe I’ve grown out of this approach for music altogether? Or perhaps things have just gotten so bleak that the last thing I wanted to jam at the moment was more bleak music. Of course, that’s more of a “me” problem and I don’t think that fans will be all that upset with the cold and nihilistic approach of this recording. I just feel that Ulcerate have made better albums before and this one certainly didn’t do it for me. However, it’s solid enough so I’ll give it a solid score.