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Cancer: Death Shall Rise | FESTIVALPHOTO

Cancer: Death Shall Rise


Cyclone Empire/Sound Pollution

John Walker, guitars/vocals, Carl Stokes, drums, and Ian Buchannan, bass were very much a going concern by 1991, the year after their debut. It was a good year for the band and their, mostly American ilk. It was clear that the financial side was improving too, as both the cover and the overall sound had vastly improved. No wonder since Scott Burns at Morrisound Studio was hired, and Glen Benton from DEICIDE sang background vocals on “Hang, Drawn and Quartered”. But the most vital part was probably the lead guitar of James Murphy (AGENT STEEL, OBITUARY etc.), who sadly left the band later in the year. Live gigs followed with the likes of DEICIDE, OBITUARY and UNLEASHED. Those must have been the days!

Opener “Hung, Drawn and Quartered” benefits from a much better sound than anything on “To the Gory End”. The opening part with a sound similar to a distant church bell in a horror movie was probably to everyone’s liking. They also continued their hockey arena anthem like refrains and this one was, as will be evident later on, well received live. “Tasteless Incest” has some gruesome lyrics, but also a classic death sound, a sticky refrain, and a lead heavy riff. The grooves were world class back then, and even better now. There were tendencies to grind on this album, something that “Burning Casket” doesn´t benefit from. But that is the only track which is not up to the album´s high standards. The title track, however, put things back on track. Zombie lyrics must have been on par with CANNIBAL CORPSE, complete with meaty lyrics. “Back from the Dead” is another highlight, a very melodic riff and thrash grooves and a chorus to the hockey rant-ish refrain does the trick – for me at least. As strange as it may sound the best is yet to come. Somehow they have salvaged some tracks from the 1992 Milwaukee Metal Fest, where the band killed with sensational renditions of “Hung, Drawn and Quartered” and “Blood Bath”. The sound feels bigger, the mix is great and I think the bass line is even more prominent than in the studio. The audience sounds as happy as I am. This album may be more “mainstream” in comparison with the raw and unrefined “To the Gory End”, but it is a reminder of what death metal sounded like when it conquered the world. Why CANCER wasn´t in the frontline I don´t know.

Track List
Hung, Drawn and Quartered
Tasteless Incest
Burning Casket
Death Shall Rise
Back from the Dead
Gruesome Tasks
Corpse Firre
Internal Decay

Bonus Tracks
Hung, Drawn and Quartered (Live 1992)
Blood Bath (Live 1992)

Skribent: Mikael Johansson
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