Death: The Sound of Perseverance [1998]

Released September 15, 1998
Genre Technical death metal, progressive metal
Length 56:08
Label Nuclear Blast, Relapse Records
Producer Jim Morris, Chuck Schuldiner

 The Sound of Perseverance is the seventh and final album by American death metal band Death. The album was released on September 15, 1998 through Nuclear Blast.

The album, in particular, employs a style more akin to progressive metal than the earliest Death releases, although since Human and the albums following it, the band had been developing more toward this style. The average song length on this album is around six minutes. Also, it was a breakthrough album for drummer and later radio star Richard Christy, in the tradition of previous drummers like Gene Hoglan and Sean Reinert.

The album features “Voice of the Soul”, an instrumental track that contrasts with every other work of the band in its inclusion of softer guitars and lack of percussion. In an interview done in March 1999, Chuck Schuldiner stated that Voice of the Soul was actually written during the Symbolic sessions.[4] Death has produced only two instrumentals (the other being the considerably heavier “Cosmic Sea” from Human). The album also featured a cover of Judas Priest‘s “Painkiller“, which shows Schuldiner attempting a different, high-pitched style of death growl more reminiscent of Rob Halford‘s original vocals and also singing for the first time with a clean voice through the end of the song.

Some of the song names and music on The Sound of Perseverance were originally going to appear on the first Control Denied album. Schuldiner himself denied this in an interview with Metal Maniacs in 1998 by saying that none of his compositions for Control Denied had been used to fill space for a Death album.[5] Schuldiner implied that some Control Denied songs were used for The Sound of Perseverance in an interview with Scream Magazine in October 1999, when he stated that The Fragile Art of Existence “contains a lot of music I didn’t have in mind originally.Most of the material was completed in 1996-97.” [6] Also, Tim Aymar, in December 2010, confirmed that a few of the Control Denied songs had been, in his words, “‘Deathized’ and recorded on TSOP.”[7] When Death was signed on to Nuclear Blast, Schuldiner agreed to make one last Death album before moving forward with Control Denied.

“Spirit Crusher” was the single from this album. It featured a music video that was taken from their Live in Eindhoven performance.

Track listing

All songs written and composed by Chuck Schuldiner, except where noted. 

No. Title Length
1. “Scavenger of Human Sorrow”   6:54
2. “Bite the Pain”   4:29
3. Spirit Crusher”   6:44
4. “Story to Tell”   6:34
5. “Flesh and the Power It Holds”   8:25
6. “Voice of the Soul” (instrumental) 3:42
7. “To Forgive Is to Suffer”   5:55
8. “A Moment of Clarity”   7:22
9. Painkiller” (Judas Priest cover; written by Glenn Tipton, Rob Halford, K.K. Downing) 6:03

Lyrics

1. Scavenger Of Human Sorrow

What pain will it take
to satisfy your sick appetite
go in for the kill
always in sight-prey
the time always right-feast
feed on the pain-taste
sorrow made flesh-sweet
live how you want
just don’t feed on me
if you doubt what i say
i will make you believe
shallow are words from those who starve
for a dream not their own to slash and scar

Big words, small mind
behind the pain you will find
a scavenger of human sorrow
scavenger
abstract theory the weapon of choice
used by scavenger of human sorrow
scavenger

[Solo: Schuldiner / Hamm]

So you have traveled far across the sea
to spread your written brand of misery

Always in time, prey
The time always right, feast
Feed on the pain, taste
Sorrow made flesh, sweet

Live how you want
Just don’t feed on me
If you doubt what I say
I will make you believe
Shallow are words
From those who starve
For a dream not their own to
Slash and scar

Big words, small mind
Behind the pain you will find a scavenger
Of human sorrow
Scavenger

Abstract theory
The weapon of choice used by a scavenger
Of human sorrow
Scavenger

2. Bite The Pain

Look down at the body
you may see no trace of wounds
but in the eye
the eye of the beholder
one cannot assume.

Not a drop of blood is drawn
but you know how it bleeds
beware of the sharp edged weapon
called human being

It is a shield of passion
and strong will
from this I am the victor
instead of the kill

I will not feed your hunger, instead
I bite the pain
looking not back, but forward
I bite down hard
try to cover up the trail of deceit
and daggers spawned from your soul

[Solo Hamm / Schuldiner]

Acid, the tears of remorse
flow in vain, too late for regrets
save it
for the next ill fated game.

3. Spirit Crusher

It comes from the depths
of a place unknown to the
keeper of dreams
if it could then it would steal
the sun and the moon from the sky
beware

Human at sight, monster at heart
don’t let it inside it could
tear you right apart

No guilt, it feeds in plain sight
Spirit Crusher
Stay strong and hold on tight
Spirit Crusher

Speaking in killing words

The vicious kind that crush and kill
no mercy, its pleasure to taste
The blood that it bled.

[Solo Schuldiner / Hamm]

When it’s time to feed to fulfill
the need to consume a breath
some will rise standing tall
breathing out all the breath from
the voice of a soul.

4. Story To Tell

Drifting into the lives
seep into the soul where emotions hide
dark skies were beating me down
with shadows of deceit slashing at
trust till it forever bleeds
with doubt, with pain, with trust
is pain.

When you think of me in your
multidimensional mind, try and wash the
“evil” from your mind and open it.

When you taste the truth you will
see like others before me, to you
I am past, a story to tell
tell it.

[solo Hamm / Schuldiner]

You may think you own the end
take another close look at the script

of sadness etched in the book.

5. The Flesh And The Power It Holds

I told you once but I will say it again
when you live the flesh it is the beginning
of the end
it will take you in
it will spit you out
behold the flesh and the power it holds
passion is a poison laced with pleasure bitter sweet
one of many faces that hide deep beneath
it will take you in
it will spit you out
behold the flesh and the power it holds
touch, taste, breathe, consumed
deja-vu. already knew from the first encounter
but know I know to let go of words to speak no more
like a wind upon your face you can’t see it
but you know it’s there, when beauty shows
its ugly face, just be prepared.

[Solo Schuldiner]

Passion burns like fire carried by the wind
the end of a time, a time to begin
it builds you up one way and tears
you right back down, a time to begin
the end of a time.

Touch, taste, breathe, consumed.

6. Voice Of The Soul

[Instrumental]

7. To Forgive Is To Suffer

Throughout our time a thought
escapes us to enforce a word, no
holding on to pain it may seem to some

The easy way to say o.k., twist your
knife a little deeper
words to sharp actions dark
hide the blade of the deceiver.

Enforce the words no more, be free
alone you might just find serenity.

To accept another day we choose
to give away another piece of life
to forgive is to suffer

[Solo Schuldiner]

Once or twice is kind
three or four is blind
it is not the end yet a way to begin
the power of words both good and bad.

8. A Moment of Clarity

I would describe it as an invisible darkness
casting a shadow, a blinding black
guarded by hope, my soul is kept from
the bloody claws.

Look beyond, what vision lets me see
time after time, unneeded misery
holding tight to my dreams
I own no price for you
I grip them tight and hope for sight.

Open my eyes wide to see a moment of clarity
confusion gone, it’s in your hands
your turn to ask why.

[Solo Hamm / Schuldiner]

Life is like a mystery
with many clues, but with few answers
to tell us what it is that we can do to look
for messages that keep us from the truth

[fade out solo: Schuldiner]

9. Painkiller

[JUDAS PRIEST cover]

Faster than a bullet
Terrifying scream
Enraged and full of anger
He’s half man and half machine

Rides the Metal Monster
Breathing smoke and fire
Closing in with vengeance soaring high

He is the Painkiller
This is the Painkiller

Planets devastated
Mankind’s on its knees
A saviour comes from out the skies
In answer to their pleas

Through boiling clouds of thunder
Blasting bolts of steel
Evils going under deadly wheels

He is the Painkiller
This is the Painkiller

Faster than a lazer bullet
Louder than an atom bomb
Chromium plated boiling metal
Brighter than a thousand suns

Flying high on rapture
Stronger free and brave
Nevermore encaptured
They’ve been brought back from the grave

With mankind resurrected
Forever to survive
Returns from Armageddon to the skies

He is the Painkiller
This is the Painkiller
Wings of steel Painkiller
Deadly wheels Painkiller

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