Inferi
The Path of Apotheosis

Back in 2009 I reviewed the second album, The End of an Era from this Tennessean melodic black/death metal act. It was a solid The Black Dahlia Murder inspired slab of shredding metal, but nothing that really upped the game at all. Well, with a significant lineup change (now with even more former and current members of fellow Tennesseans Enfold Darkness) larger integration of epic orchestration, better songwriting and even more shreddage, Inferi has truly upped their game.

Folks, this album is simply killer. While the back bone is still a melodic black/death metal The Black Dahlia Murder and even Cradle of Filth‘s best earlier sound (especially some of the dual vocal cadences and with some of the sweeping synths), it’s delivered on steroids, with the speed, skill and intensity of a tech death metal band like Origin (band founder/guitarist/vocalist Malcolm Pugh actually has a solo tech death metal side project, A Loathing Requiem on the same label) and to these ears, the new Unique Leader released from Altarbeast and features just some kickass, shredding lead guitar work and some increased symphonic elements that border on Fleshgod Apocalypse-like epic-ness.

Whereas The End of an Era‘s 54 minute run time was a bit overwrought with the longer songs, each of the 11 songs (most hovering around 6 minutes or so) on this albums 65 minute run time is simply captivating. There are so many standout moments in each song, even if they sound similar (hyper blast beat, shredding solo, militant march, cool synth, repeat) they are gloriously rousing and the band even has some restraint here and there to mix things up a bit. Without going into each and every song (though certainly possible) you have the climactic blast of opener “Those from the Heavens Came”, dramatic orchestral bridge and solo work in “A Betrayal Foretold”, fierce melodic blast at 3:45 of “The Ophidian Form”, somber pacing amid the otherwise tumultuous “Prelude to a Perilous Fate”, frantic hack and slash of “Destroyer”, downright killer recurring solo/riff that opens “Onslaught of the Covenant”, stirring symphonic march in “Marching Through the Flames of Tyranny” and personal favorite, the closing title track with elements of everything for a perfectly rousing end note.

Thanks to the tip off from the fine folks at my former stomping grounds at lastrit.es, as otherwise I would not have even known that these guys had released another album, and that album likely being one of my very favorite albums of the year. I suggest you look these guys up and discover one of 2014’s most surprising, under the radar, dark horse gems.

Get this.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by E. Thomas
March 20th, 2014

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