Home > Music > Morbid Angel – Blessed Are The Sick

Morbid Angel – Blessed Are The Sick

It’s vicious! And crippling! And… sorry, wrong album.

However, Blessed Are The Sick IS vicious and crippling, although in a rather different manner than its immediate predecessor and successor. There’s a few things worth noting here:

1. This album is the only one by MA to have genuinely good non-metal interludes – “Doomsday Celebration” and “Desolate Ways” are actually worth listening to in the course of the album.

2. This album has the most rerecorded material of any Morbid Angel album – Besides having “Abominations”, a shortened version of “Unholy Blasphemies”, and “The Ancient Ones”, “Thy Kingdom Come” was actually released as a 7 inch LP in 1988 or so.

3. Compared to Altars  and Covenant, there’s substantially less stuff that sounds like Norwegian black metal (via influence). There are fewer openly melodic tremelo riffs, less infinite blast and fill-type drumming from Pete Sandoval, etc.

This was actually the first album of the group’s that I listened to, and it took me a while to get into the compositions and such. Same with Covenant, actually – Altars of Madness was the first to really have any instant appeal to me.  It’s meaningfully slower than Altars at many points, but it’s not a doom metal album by any means – it just contains a greater portion of midpaced and slow moments than Altars ever did, such as the title track (which had a cheesy video made). However, its fastest moments are even more rapid than that of Altars (Brainstorm, Thy Kingdom Come), but the band didn’t reach its peak velocities until Covenant.

Leaving the realm of the abstract allows us to see that this album exudes this sort of sick, twisted aesthetic – it’s less consonant, more percussive, and it listens like the works of someone WAY off from mainstream thought, who’s been thinking about things for a long time and is on the verge of cracking – let’s say Nietzsche when was working on The Will to Power. Shrewd listeners can keep their ears primed for the primary motifs of this:

1. “I bend my knee not but for my selfish desire”

2.”Civilized I shall not be/By the holy strain of law”

3.”Blessed are we to taste/This life of sin”

Nothing like taking lyrics out of context to prove a point, eh? Still, it’s the left hand path again – hedonism over spirituality, earth over sky, whatever. Altars was like this, but it was simpler, restless, genre defying death metal that every cool kid listened to. This is less accessible, and frankly, it’s quite hellish – two years after the search for power is announced, this album IS power.

Insane rambling aside, this is more complex than Altars, less accessible to death metal novices, not necessarily better, but still important, etc. I’d rather not rate it.

Next up is Domination, most likely.

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