Infirmity
Descendants of Sodom

If you were to ask me where Infirmity was from, based solely on their sound, I’d be hard pressed to come up with an answer. The band and their full-length debut, Descendants of Sodom, is brimming full with influential might. A journey of brutal, melodic, and even blackened tinged death metal groove, Descendants of Sodom is one well played, cohesively put together, and memorable listen for a debut album.

The album’s seven tracks are adeptly thought out, with plenty of change ups and meaty death metal hooks that flow with purposeful intent from a point A to point B. For reference sake, I’d say Infirmity bring to mind a mix of Exhumed/Impaled with Deicide and Malevolent Creation, plus an added New York sensible groove, and just a tad bit of Dissection-esque melody. Sounds pretty tasty doesn’t it? The subsequent learning of the band’s hometown to be Los Angeles seems to make all too much sense when one really thinks about it.

Descendants of Sodom suprisingly opens with the piano laced beginnings of “Gomorrah Aflame”, an instrumental that melds into an epic Metallica meets Malevolent Creation type of affair, before the album’s title track comes barreling in with its thrashing, blackened and quite enjoyable death metal pummel. In fact, I’d say enjoyable is the perfect term in describing D.o.S.’s thirty-five minute run time. Plain and simple, there’s just a lot of old fashioned death metal fun to be found within the album. “Darkness Reigns Supreme” damn near tricks you with its groove metal centric beginnings before morphing into black metal battlefields of temolo runs and blastbeats, though with a bit of chunk and chug to boot. While “Infatuated with Intoxication” lures you in with an upbeat thrashing before kicking it into full blown Exhumed/Impaled/Ghoul-ish territory. The whole track is done extremely well, especially the high/low vocal tandem.

“Depths of Regression” might just be my personal favorite and overall highlight of Descendants of Sodom. Despite the tracks name, “Depths of Regression” actually invokes a vibe of early progressive death metal, à la ’91-’93. It’s an engaging and satisfying listen, packed with catchy riffs, underlying melody, good guitar leads, a great high/low vocal mix, and a fantastic flow. What more could you want? Closing things out in more than fine form, “Unholy Deception” has a nice Blood Red Throne/Severe Torture presence to it, even recalling Ralph Santolla era Deicide in the leadwork. The song travels a nice road within the riffs, with that ’90’s progressiveness rearing its head once more at the 4:27 mark, as well as some proficient bass adding a killer touch at the 6:31, while it is a tad long-winded, overall it’s a straight up winner.

I have to say, I was pretty impressed with Infirmity and Descendants of Sodom. While the group isn’t going to top your list of unexpected surprises in metal for 2019, I do think  they have struck a pretty good chord with their debut. Wisely using their metal influences to craft and capture their own brand of brutality that, while being unoriginal, if I’m being totally honest, does come off as “them” rather than any certain band of influence. A clean, but not too clean, production captures the band’s tones and performances quite well, especially in the drum and bass department; while both are competent and compelling, they never veer into too flashy or out of place territories, or really color outside of the lines unnecessarily. Instead both provide an ingredient essential to Infirmity‘s success that may be overlooked but would be sorely missed if not there.

Top it all off  with an engaging piece of cover art, and both Infirmity and Lost Apparitions Records delivered a nice little death metal monster with Descendants of Sodomc at the end of 2019.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Kristofor Allred
January 31st, 2020

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