INFERI
"The End of an Era"

(Tribunal)

01. The Ruin of Mankind
02. Gatherings In the Chambers of Madness
03. The Endless Siege
04. A New Breed of Savior
05. Sentenced to Eternal Life
06. The War Machine Embodiment
07. The Warrior's Infinite Opus
08. Quest For the Trinity
09. Forged In the Phlegethon
10. Cursed Unholy

RATING: 8/10

In these heady downloading days, it's hard to give an unknown album the attention it sometimes needs to reveal all its facets. Upon a cursory listen, U.S. blackened metallers INFERI seem to fall into that gaping maw of decent, somewhat derivative bands borrowing from Norwegian black metal and Gothenburg death/thrash to create an American homage, not far removed from what, say, BLACK DAHLIA MURDER are doing. But after a couple spins of "The End of an Era", you start to realize just how damn blistering fast this band is cooking along at any given moment, and how many frilly solos and exquisite little guitar runs they're effortlessly tossing into the mix at 900 miles per hour. Virtuoso precision at lightning speed may not seem like enough to set a band apart, but INFERI do it so well, it's scary.

Not that there aren't occasional bits of slow, imperious majesty — one begins "The War Machine Embodiment", for example, and it lasts all of eighteen seconds before the song kicks into high gear. Add beats that shift from thrashing polka to chugging double-kick to frenetic blasts, and throw in the old high-then-low DM vocal trick, and you get songs with a lot of fury and flash to them, and the rudiments of the band's own emerging personality amid the pristine black and death metal convention on slavish display here. Just try not to be impressed with the guitar interplay (and bass solo!) of the album's centerpiece, the shredding eight-minute instrumental "The Warrior's Infinite Opus" — fluid runs and scorching leads that, in a perfect world, would have these guys on the covers of guitar magazines. Jaw-dropping stuff!

Bottom line, if you like your black metal squeaky-clean, impeccably played and produced, insanely fast and reliant on blazing guitars to provide frills and thrills, INFERI will please you mightily. There's some serious talent and chops at work here, and an emerging sense of dynamics and arrangement that could make these guys a leading light in the scene, if they can get enough attention to stand out from the hordes. Get into them now and impress all your friends with your ear for the next big thing.

COMMENTS

To comment on a BLABBERMOUTH.NET story or review, you must be logged in to an active personal account on Facebook. Once you're logged in, you will be able to comment. User comments or postings do not reflect the viewpoint of BLABBERMOUTH.NET and BLABBERMOUTH.NET does not endorse, or guarantee the accuracy of, any user comment. To report spam or any abusive, obscene, defamatory, racist, homophobic or threatening comments, or anything that may violate any applicable laws, use the "Report to Facebook" and "Mark as spam" links that appear next to the comments themselves. To do so, click the downward arrow on the top-right corner of the Facebook comment (the arrow is invisible until you roll over it) and select the appropriate action. You can also send an e-mail to blabbermouthinbox(@)gmail.com with pertinent details. BLABBERMOUTH.NET reserves the right to "hide" comments that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate and to "ban" users that violate the site's Terms Of Service. Hidden comments will still appear to the user and to the user's Facebook friends. If a new comment is published from a "banned" user or contains a blacklisted word, this comment will automatically have limited visibility (the "banned" user's comments will only be visible to the user and the user's Facebook friends).