Obituary – The End Complete

It’s nearly impossible to assess the value of this album without first referencing the classic that preceded it. Despite the almost riskily simplistic style of Cause of Death, it still remains an undisputed and unmatchedly brutal Death Metal monster. Little had changed since then with the release of The End Complete and yet something essential was missing. No, not the haunting, melodic appeal of James Murphy’s lead guitars. Something slightly less tangible, but is terribly apparent when listening to the album. All the components of a quality Obituary album are there, because they are basic enough to reproduce over and over again (how they failed at doing even this with their following albums is a great mystery) but where the magic has gone seems to be due to it’s misplaced sense of rhythm. Obituary were essentially beginning to streamline (read: commodify) their sound, so that none of the parts related to the themes, that of disease, dying and death. Where this was most apparent was in the rhythmic dimension, which just grooved and nothing more. It was catchy but it still sounded like Death Metal to the less discerning of ears, and so it sold more than the average Death Metal album at the time. Although it plays innocent, blame this album for every crime the band has commited since.


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One thought on “Obituary – The End Complete”

  1. Thorn says:

    Nah bollocks, many criticize Obituary for not producing The End Complete again and again but I for one feel that Back From the Dead was a fantastic album. Sure your more traditional elements were missing but they side stepped certain elements to create a very slow groove oriented album. The guitars might sound simplistic to any tech death fiend but the timing and groove sets a great mood and the riffs are enjoyable and more imortantly original. Tardy’s vocals on the album were the best he’s produced and they reek of attitude and conviction. The solos and wailing really summon up mood and give great atmosphere. What followed BFTD I don’t care for, bar a few songs but the departure of Alan was a significant loss.

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