Album Review: The Body – I’ve Seen All I Need To See

Through harrowing combinations of noise, doom, darkwave, industrial, and sludge metal, The Body has proven themselves as a well-equipped vacuum of all things dismal and horrific. A freshman listen of such tumultuous viscosity can prove the tenacity of one’s eardrums. Equated to be such heavy hitters, both in popularity and audio presentation, they’ve garnered a reputation of grazing through bands; i.e., Thou, Full of Hell and Uniform, giving each side a challenge in their respective musical adversity, and as a result creates a lumbering giant of destructive tendencies. And whatever they’ve picked up, they’ve absorbed and carefully placed which ever inheritance in their own musical output. Where their evolution currently resides is in their newest album I’ve Seen All I Need to See.

The Body has always allowed listeners a stay of execution with their albums—to where the atmosphere is setup properly in the beginning and giving some space, be it ever so narrow, for the mood to sink in. The albums opening track “A Lament” gives a racket of booming toms combined with fizzling distortion and a spoken word piece describing the repetitious climbing of a staircase before Chip King enters with vocals sounding like a guttural whisper. The song clambers to a cacophony of noise which closes the track and leaves a steady traversal into “Tied Up and Locked In”, a relatively faster song. “Eschatological Imperative” slams heartily with its echoing drums bolstering the sequential feedback and noise with virtually no break in the waves. Whereas “A Pain of Knowing” allows enough breathing room between beats to let the ambience settle in, until the track’s halfway point when the space is filled with a repetitious, disembodied, muffled scream.

“The City is Shelled” pays more homage to 80s darkwave making it the closest thing to a proverbial eye in the hurricane, for right after that comes the devastating “They Are Coming” leading in the second half with its thunderous compilation of noise that with each beat feels like another wave crashing through a brick wall. The dominant force continues with the left-right-left-right marching beat of “The Handle/The Blade”, giving the essence charging into battle. Then it concludes with “Path of Failure” with improvised drumming under elongated swells of dubious wails and growls simmering down to a close. 

While The Body has been making waves composing with other artists, it’s refreshing to hear them revert back to form and remind listeners that their sonic debris stands on its own. As creators of sounds that, in their delivery, simultaneously exist in the background and forefront, I’ve Seen All I Need to See holds a prosaic sense of familiarity to when their sound held no outer influence or addition to their conception. In short, this album is a testament to Chip King and Lee Buford doing what they do best. 

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