By escapism I mean making it into a linear horror entertainment product squarely aimed for the public that doesn't want to engage in the scary ideas - kind of things such as "brutal death metal" which from Cannibal Corpse onwards has sought to make death metal into something where the horror and agony is a matter of aesthetics (endless recombinations of murder and death happening randomly as in the hands of a screenwriter that needs to invent scenes for Friday the 13th part 2627), not content (all of it is just a jumble of words, it has no story, teaching or direction underneath). It's "illustration" for a rock/jazz/metal jam session, not mythology or spirituality or.
There are at least four approaches to death within death metal: the sublime, the material, the Messianic and the existential.
Contrary to your assertion that Cannibal Corpse lyrics offer no “story,” nearly all of the band’s tracks present a narrative exploring sadism or sadomasochistic themes within the context of a particular happening or situation. The encyclopaedic thrust present in what you identify as the band’s documentation of “endless recombinations of murder and death happening randomly” is descended from the taxonomy of perversions offered in de Sade’s 120 days of Sodom. These narratives present lurid and fantastical vistas of torture and mutilation that are too easily dismissed as mere “escapism” - if they are escapist, it is an escapism worthy of question, not least in the light of the comic allegation that one escapes life by thinking of death.
Cannibal Corpse is offensive to many people because, like horror movies, it markets the tendency of the public to gaze at car crashes and accidents and, by so doing, forces an acknowledgement of the “darker side” of what is taken to be “human nature.”* If this “darker side” is evident in waking life in what is called “morbid curiosity,” it persists in dreams through something like the obscene fantasies of de Sade. Holding in abeyance, for a moment, de Sade’s response to these drives, I submit that for the non-sadist ("less" sadistic person, at least) these fantasies themselves are, in situation, closely related to Kant’s notion of the dynamic sublime. Just as one gazes upon a wild and untamed landscape, feeling sublimely safe from behind a cottage window in the presence of a comforting fire, so, when reading de Sade, or listening to Cannibal Corpse, one feels temporarily safe upon his island of life amidst a sea of torment and death. This safety is profoundly fragile and comes not from an "avoidance" of death, but a recontextualisation of life in the face of death. The sadist himself transgresses this sublimity by seeking to usurp the place of Nature/death and transform other subjects into mere objects for pleasure before his will. For the non-sadist, however, the music of Cannibal Corpse intensifies the random malevolence of death by presenting life as raw material for a predatory will, and with its intense, driving music, even asking the listener to celebrate, as metaphor, the nihilistic randomness of such a will. It is “shock” music in that it shockingly refuses moral decency in favour of untamed excess (perhaps what Blake identifies as the road to wisdom).
A second approach to death resides in what you identify as the “jumble of words” approach to lyrics. Predominantly this technique is found in goregrind music descended from Carcass. This approach presents medical jargon as a conflicting discourse vying with everyday notions of personhood (e.g. “my hand,” “my arm,” “your pretty face” etc) for purchase upon the body. Its often nonsensical, comedic tapestry of medical terminology presents an extreme materialism as an antithesis to pious or sanctified notions of death, human decency and individual autonomy. In staging its “revolt of the body,” this music might be thought of as Nietzschean.
“What indeed does man know about himself?… Does not nature keep secret from him most things, even about his body. e.g. the convolutions of the intestines, the quick flow of the blood-currents, the intricate vibration of the fibres, so as to banish and lock him up in proud delusive knowledge. And woe to that fatal curiosity which might one day have the power to peer out and down through a crack in the chamber of consciousness and then suspect that man is sustained in the indifference of his ignorance by that which is pitiless, greedy, insatiable, and murderous-as if hanging in dreams on the back of a tiger. Given this situation, where in the world could the drive for truth have come from?” – On Truth and Lies in a Nonmoral Sense (1873)
In a certain sense, one might say that, on their first two albums, Carcass “peer out… through a crack in the chamber of consciousness” towards the taboo body beneath. Maybe they could see the ANUS. Far from being a “sacralization of death,” this is a "materialist" reduction of life (and truth) itself.
A third approach is Messianic, as found on Morbid Angels’ Formulas Fatal to the Flesh album, longing for the destruction of the world in the hope of a renewal (“come with fire and burn the flesh from this earth”).
A fourth approach is existential (note: not existentialist) and is found in Eastern form on Gorguts’ Obscura album. This approach casts death as an ontological constituent of man, as something to which he is always already bound.
* - Similarly, pornography markets the taboo sex drive but here, rather than reinforce, one wishes to penetrate the thin sheet separating observed from observer. This results in stimulation, not sublimity.
I must assume that the Metal escapism you are referring to is something like replacing the mundane, social, everyday sphere of activity with the concerns of the intangible, the occult and the "otherworld"; but in line with the Platonists I believe that this means approaching fundamental reality (the noumenal world, the subconscious, the Abyss), not an escape from it.
“Fundamental reality” cannot be “approached” without an understanding of fundamental ontology, which is deeper than the epistemological division of phenomenon and noumenon. Any distinction between cognisable beings in appearance and the ineffability of what remains outside appearance is predicated upon a presuppositional understanding of being itself. I stress, too, the metaphysical implications of an “approach” made by a “subject” to reality. Dasein
in the clearing of its cultural world is the pre-subjective vector through which Being shows up as what it is. An understanding of Being is prior to anything like a “subject” or “object,” which are themselves ontological structures of Being made possible only by the pre-ontological understanding.
While there is continued talk of pattern language, categories and noumena as foundational structures of reality, the question of Being will remain obscure and fundamental ontology will continually be confused with epistemology.