...Of The Dark Light

Admittedly, with the album name, the more Fallujah ish cover, yet more turnover (veterans Guy Marchais and Kevin Talley have left replaced by young guns Charlie Errigo and Eric Morotti respectively) and the first single “Your Last Breaths” not impressing me very much, I had pretty low expectations for this album. But for album number 8, mainstays Frank Mullen, Terrance Hobbs and Derek Boyer have ensured that …Of The Dark Light isn’t a real clunker, but neither one of their best, being not quite as good as Pinnacle of Bedlam, but still releasing an album worthy of the legendary name.

“Clarity Through Deprivation” opens the album with almost the same immediacy, devastation and structure as “Cycles of Suffering” opened Pinnacle of Bedlam, showing the newcomers are indeed up to the task, and immediately sating any concerns I had about the album.  “The Warmth Within the Dark”, delivers what can only be described as a classic Suffocation number, with a churning, mid paced, stop start precision. After the aforementioned  “Your Last Breaths”, unarguably the albums weakest, forgetful track, you get “Return to the Abyss”, a rip roaring blaster that showcases everything Suffocation has been known for since the help grandfather death metal many years ago, but adds some interesting guitar work in its final few moments, that’s a little something different for Suffocation. But there is no acoustics on this album, as “Sullen Days” added on Pinnacle.

Between the solid but forgettable, “The Violation”,  and “Some Things Should be Left Alone”, the album’s title track delivers the albums hardest hitting breakdown, that’s sure to crush skulls in a live environment, but dang, and its bass drop only enforces how much I still miss those bass drops from Pierced from Within, and overall, there’s not  a riff or breakdown that’s truly iconic on the album anywhere.

Production wise, this is OK, if a bit dry in the guitar dept, a step back but similar to Pinnacle but not reaching the levels of my favorite post reunion album, Blood Oath. Mullen seems to be just there again as he was before Pinnacle, and the fact he is not touring with the band and the song titles seem decidedly un-Mullen-ish gives you some idea of his possible level of involvement.

In true Suffocation fashion, there is a cover of a prior song, this time it’s “Epitaph of the Credulous” from the divisive  Breeding the Spawn, and it only highlights how good songs from that album are with a better production, but also highlights there is only 30 minutes of new music here, and none of that new music really screams to be anything that’s is to be considered ‘great’ Suffocation, just good Suffocation and when compared to the new, killer Dying Fetus album, it’s quite a difference.

But at this point in their career, Suffocation are not going to write any classic tracks that match “Catatonia”, “Infecting the Crypts” or “Liege of Inveracity”, but at least they can certainly not tarnished their legacy like Morbid Angel did with “I am Morbid” or “Radikult!”, and for that we should should all be thankful.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
June 12th, 2017


  1. Commented by: The Forever People

    This sounds absolutely fuckin KILLER blasting out of the speakers in my car.Love this album!!!!

  2. Commented by: Kevin E.

    Good review and you summed it up perfectly. Not great, but a solid addition to their canon.

  3. Commented by: F.Rini

    Erik: As usual you deliver on a well-written review, which I disagree with and I’m not sure when that happened last, since we agree on most. I find the new Suffo to be quite spectacular and for me, it tops Pinnacle and I love that album. This happens to be the most brutal Suffo, since Despise the Sun and their best reunion album, in my opinion. Guitars are ferocious and blasting this in my truck with the subwoofer on is causing disturbances everywhere. Regardless, as always, I respect our differences of opinion. Frank \m/

  4. Commented by: Count_Breznak

    “solid but forgettable” pretty much describes the whole album. I actually forgot it existed.

  5. Commented by: emperorj

    I wouldn’t say this is even “solid.” Forgettable, mainly. I mostly disliked Pinnacle but it had a couple of cool tracks, this one just runs on and on with no really memorable moments.

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