Florida’s death metal kings Obituary return with a fix up album of sorts in Ten Thousand Ways To Die. Consisting of two new tracks and eleven live songs culled from various shows from over the 2015 Obituary touring cycle, Ten Thousand Ways To Die will probably whet your appetite for new material from Obituary, but probably won’t do much more.
The two new songs are both mid-paced, riff heavy dirges with the first song, “Loathe,” clocking in at over six minutes and featuring some of the deepest vocals yet from John Tardy. The song is good, but tends to meander. The follow up, “Ten Thousand Ways To Die,” is shorter, but is rather typical and isn’t particularly memorable.
Touring at the time in support of Inked In Blood, the live set list features two songs from that album, plus a number of other songs from albums scattered throughout Obituary’s sizable discography. A lot of the songs are Obituary classics, the sound quality is good, and Obituary certainly nail it, but, at best, we’re revisiting well worn ground that was covered with Obituary’s first live album, Dead, from nearly 20 years ago.
Obituary are a veteran band, though, and deliver the goods in concert. For example, the first two songs in the set list were recorded at the Mayan Theater in Los Angeles late last year, a show that I attended. But, at best, Ten Thousand Ways To Die will give you only an impression of how Obituary are in a live setting. Live albums these days are a poor substitute for the real thing.
I suppose the time has come for a new Obituary live album, although Ten Thousand Ways To Die will probably have the greatest appeal to die-hard Obituary fans.
(released October 21, 2016 on Relapse Records)