Pack the bong, it's time to load up another Cannabis Corpse; it's gonna light your ass up 'til the smoke drifts from the speakers.
Cannabis Corpse are more than just a stoned love letter to Cannibal Corpse and much of metal at large. What may seem like a joke band to outsiders and rudimentary listeners is…well, still a really damn amusing band. But one that still deserves to be taken seriously beyond their copious name altercations and love letters that the band drives in ala blunt force. Their latest offering From Wisdom to Baked (a reference to tech-death masters Gorguts album From Wisdom to Hate) is a fuzzy, dizzying thirty-six minute trip of snazzy stoner death metal.
Anyone familiar with older Cannabis Corpse is going to notice two things: the band still sounds like they're holding onto their Cannibal Corpse death metal roots strongly, but From Wisdom to Baked is a little less technical. Let me elaborate on that: less technical in the sense that it's not trying to be tech-death metal (e.g.: Wormed, Archspire), though it's still plenty technical. As a guitarist, I wouldn't call any of the songs on here easy to play, but anyone accustomed to the structure of Beneath Grow Lights Thou Shalt Rise is going to find this latest offering more solidly rooted in straight up death metal. Though songs like “From Wisdom to Baked” sound like something Gorguts might've penned.
Maybe it's just me, but after playing their discography back to back for the last few weeks, one noticeable change is how much more this album sounds like stoner metal. Just, think about that for a moment. This album has actually kicked up the stoned feel. Brent Legion sounds like he might have run his guitars through some of Bongzilla's pedals for sections. Pieces like “Zero Weed Tolerance” and its sporadic burst of speed and sweet licks manage to really drive home the stoner feel (then again, so does much of the album). The album has a hazy feel cast over it at all times. Hell, listen to the background of the awesome intro solo to “THC Crystal Mountain.” It cuts through the haze with razor wire aggressiveness.
Speaking of aggressiveness, From Wisdom to Baked absolutely shreds. Even with a fine smoke cast over everything, this album's riffs are dank. Songs like “Individual Pot Patterns” (featuring Chris Barnes), “Considered Dank” and “Zero Weed Tolerance” thrash hard with badass structuring. The pieces pick up, never let up, and never bore, especially “Considered Dank.” Other tracks like “With Their Hash He Will Create” stampede with heavy as hell breakdowns. The instrumental work on this album cannot be complimented enough.
It's also nice to hear a band that actually does something with its bass. Land Phil has some fantastic bass sections in here that actually stand out as opposed to being drown in the background and left to follow guitar riffs. “Pull the Carb” has excellent bass lines in that bring out a heavier flavor in the tune. “Baptized in Bud” has some excellent bass in it too; even leads that lay down smokin' riffs contrasting the baked out guitars.
From Wisdom to Baked is Cannabis Corpse's strongest offering yet. The album is ripe with references to Death, whom appear to be the biggest focus on the album, and Gorguts. Yet it all sounds like an amalgamation of Cannibal Corpse splashed with Morbid Angel, Death and Gorguts. Those that liked Tube of the Restrained will find that From Wisdom to Baked takes that sound further and fuzzier. Cannabis Corpse is a band by death metal lovers for death metal lovers, and they easily stand on their own. They deserve to be recognized on their own merits, not as a parody band, but as a serious(ly fun and enjoyable) project. The band is incredibly talented and has some of the best song structure you're ever going to come across in the death metal scene. From Wisdom to Baked is the brutal blunt death metal bludgeoning you've been waiting for. Smoke up.