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  • Artist: RIgor Mortis
  • Label: Capitol
  • Genre: Heavy Metal
  • Release Date: 1988


    One of the biggest losses in 2019 was that of Rigor Mortis frontman Bruce Corbitt who died of esophageal cancer at the age of 56. Rigor Mortis disbanded in 2012 following the passing of Mike Scaccia. Coincidentally, Rigor Mortis' self-titled contains lyrics about the topic of death. Losing support from a major label (Capitol Records) because of this album is even more scary. However, not everything about Rigor Mortis is scary.

    Rigor Mortis comes off as a thrash metal album with extreme metal tendencies. As such, Bruce Corbitt's vocals are generally a hoarse mid-range bark. Including the thrash metal chants, the vocals are scary enough to send concerned parents off to Hell. Mike Scaccia is a monster at the guitar with the opening track "Welcome to Your Funeral" displaying his axe prowess rather well. Scaccia's solos are blazing and are on par with the likes of Alex Skolnick. Harden Harrison's drumming is fast to the point that it borders on death metal at times, but is still as technical as the drumming on Slayer's Seasons in the Abyss. Casey Orr's bass adds an amount of aggression that was lacking in Metallica's fourth consecutive multi-platinum selling album, ...And Justice for All (also 1988).

    An aggressive album, there are ten songs on Rigor Mortis, each worthy of your attention. "Bodily Dismemberment" contains some spooky vocals by Bruce Corbitt and some insane rhythm patterns. Mike Scaccia's guitar solo on here may be long, but it's also a defining part of this song. "Wizard of Gore" has guitars that are strongly influenced by Ride the Lightning-era Metallica, as Mike Scaccia's guitar solo on here is significantly faster than your typical solo. It also has a really cool Halloween vibe to it that I like. "Die in Pain" sees Bruce Corbitt doing his best Peter Steele (ex-Carnivore) impersonation, which is odd since both of them are no longer with us. Mike Scaccia's guitar solo has more of a classical influence on this song, something that makes this song stand out.

    ​​​​​​​Although Rigor Mortis didn't stand at the top of 1988, it's now considered to be one of the best thrash metal albums of said year. With Bruce Corbitt and Mike Scaccia no longer being with us, coupled with the fact that the 2010s are almost over, it was the perfect time to review Rigor Mortis. Rigor Mortis may have only had a few full-lengths, however, they left a huge legacy behind with this self-titled debut. With this album, Mike Scaccia would make a name for himself, eventually landing a gig with industrial metal giants Ministry. As such, there's really no need to explain the reasoning to this score. Rigor Mortis and Bruce Corbitt have left us and they have ended in "Slow Death".

Rigor Mortis - Rigor Mortis (CD)

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