CMJ - 5/22/00, p.32
"...CC puts the fun back into dysfunction. The Rocky Mountain hydro-grind quartet adopts a death metal stance with its fierce, double-bass drumming....tossing in twisted free jazz and spoken passages..."
Personnel: Jawsh (vocals); Zac (guitar); John (drums).
Cephalic Carnage's Relapse debut is an often confounding maze of death metal/grindcore and is certainly well titled. The first track, "Hybrid," immediately sets the tone and lets you know what you're in for: opening with a speaker-crushing grind section, it then derails into a jazz-tinged, almost psychedelic spoken word passage before winding through a maze of tempo changes and complex guitar riffs reminiscent of technical death metal bands such as Suffocation or Cryptopsy. The rest of the album is equally unpredictable. Tracks range from five seconds to 15 minutes; the album is littered with voice samples and electronic noise blurts; and the songs themselves are often structured in ways that, much like the lyrics, seem to defy logic. Highlights include the crushing "Eradicate Authority" (yes, despite the silly title) and the instrumental "9' of Smoke," the album's catchiest track as well as its most technically deranged one. Special mention has to go to Keith Falgout's (Soilent Green, Acid Bath) production; the album has a huge, nearly distorted bottom-end, but you can also make out the intricate drumming and cymbal work with great clarity. The vocals may be an acquired taste, even for fans of the genre. However, if you enjoy death metal/grindcore at its most absurd and musically impossible, then Exploiting Dysfunction is worth your time. ~ William York