"Inferno", the new solo album from former MEGADETH guitarist Marty Friedman, sold around 2,100 copies in the United States in its first week of release to debut at position No. 186 on The Billboard 200 chart. The CD was released on May 26 via Prosthetic Records (except in Japan, where the album was made available through Universal Music).
"Inferno" was recorded primarily in Los Angeles with engineer Chris Rakestraw (DANZIG, CHILDREN OF BODOM) and mixed by Jens Bogren (OPETH, AMON AMARTH) — features what Friedman recently told Guitar World is "the most intense writing and playing I can do." The album also includes notable guest appearances by several artists influenced by Friedman, including CHILDREN OF BODOM frontman Alexi Laiho, SKYHARBOR mastermind Keshav Dhar and David Davidson, as well as Friedman's first songwriting collaboration with Jason Becker since the pair played together in CACOPHONY, the pioneering duo of guitar mayhem.
In addition, "Inferno" breaks all genre rules and creates new ones with an exhilarating and musically daring mash-up with Jørgen Munkeby of the acclaimed "blackjazz" act SHINING, as well as two tracks featuring vocals by rock guru Danko Jones. Overall, "Inferno" is by fa Friedman's most thrilling and adventurous effort to date.
"Inferno" track listing:
03. Wicked Panacea (feat. Rodrigo y Gabriela)
04. Steroidhead (feat. Keshav Dhar)
05. I Can't Relax (feat. Danko Jones)
06. Meat Hook (feat. Jørgen Munkeby)
07. Hyper Doom
08. Sociopaths (feat. David Davidson)
09. Lycanthrope (feat. Alexi Laiho & Danko Jones)
11. Horrors (co-written by Jason Becker)
12. Inferno (reprise)
"I'm extremely proud of the work I've done with CACOPHONY and MEGADETH, but I was never interested in stopping there," Friedman said. "'Inferno' is the album that fans of my work with those two bands have always wanted me to make. I've finally made it, and completely on my own maniacal terms."
He added: "On the guests' songs, each would write a song from scratch, and then I would arrange it and add my parts to it," Friedman said. "That way, we were both invested in it, and it’s a little bit of a deeper experience than just banging out a guest solo."
"I wanted to create a new landmark to which my future music will be compared," Friedman said. "That idea of just going completely balls-out — knowing what the full potential of my music and my playing could possibly be, and actually making it a reality — was what drove me through the whole process."
"Sociopaths" lyric video:
"Meat Hook" audio stream:
"Steroidhead" song audio stream: