Cryptopsy's last album, 2008's "The Unspoken King," was widely panned for being too inconsistent and trendy-sounding. But four years following that brief and unwelcome foray into deathcore territory, the Canadian quintet storm back onto the scene sounding as strong as ever with a brand new full-length, their seventh. Typically, a self-titled album usually marks a watershed release of sorts for a band -- the one album where they started down a fairly experimental path, and/or ventured into a stylistic musical change in some way. But in Cryptopsy's case, it marks a simple return to form. 2012's "Cryptopsy" flushes all of the sour memories of "Unspoken King" down the crapper, as it is a textbook return to studded form for the band. This is a very technical death metal record played at grindcore-worthy speeds and intensities. Suffice it to say, it bubbles over with acrobatic guitar picking (including memorable riffs and technical solos), breakneck drumming, fast bass lines, unique and contagious grooves, and brutal vocals.
The album begins with a surprisingly slow and ominous intro. This, then, slams into a full-on, decapitating assault of deft, technical, slapped bass lines, blasting drums, and racing guitars (including a careening yet simultaneously fairly melodic solo). Plenty of brutal and monstrous vocals are included in "Two Pound Torch," as well. "Shag Harbour's Visitors" works similarly, with an ominously melodic guitar intro before slamming into Cryptopsy's usual brutal mayhem, full of thunderous blast beats, motoring double bass kicks, and piercing pig squeal vocals. Moving right along, "Red-Skinned Scapegoat" is highlighted by a technical bass solo and two melodic guitar solos -- with the second one being one of the best of guitarist Jon Levasseur's career. The tune also adopts a jazzy breakdown later on, complete with ethereal guitar strumming and melodic bass work. Other highlights include the hefty, bullying, chugging riffs, chunky, lurching breakdowns, grumbling bass notes, ascending guitar solo, and brutal pig squeals of "Amputated Enigma"; the catchy, staccato riffing and interlocking machine-gun fast double bass blasts of "The Golden Square Mile"; and the strong, driving bass work (including grumbling bass grooves, noteworthy bass intro, and bass interludes/mini solos) heard throughout the aptly-entitled "Ominous."
True, there are a few other Cryptopsy offerings that need to be picked up before this one ("None So Vile" and/or "Whisper Supremacy," anyone?), but once you have those (and you do have those, right?), there should be nothing that stands in your way of getting this self-titled affair. "Cryptopsy" might not be the band's most groundbreaking installment in Cryptopsy's discography, but it is certainly a strong one, and one that is very likely to satisfy all of their fans.