Internal Bleeding

10 years after Onwards to Mecca, one of the elder statesmen of New Yawk death metal, like Pyrexia last year, has reformed and are giving it another go on Unique Leader records. And like Pyrexia’s Feast of Iniquity, Imperium is a relatively successful reunion, if still in the shadow of Suffocation and Dying Fetus all these years later.

Unlike Onwards to Mecca which was really lone original member drummer Bill Tolley and some other dudes, Imperium sees another original member return in guitarist Chris Pervelis and it shows. Where as Pyrexia really didn’t sound like the original Pyrexia (though still being a solid album) Imperium sounds like Internal Bleeding‘s known slammy, hard core tinged sound. Aided by former Pyrexia/Catastrophic  vocalist Keith Devito, who brings a more hardcore vocal approach, the New Yawk sneer and slam is in full effect on Imperium, and while it’s certainly not an instant classic or a year end contender as much of Unique Leaders 2014 slate, it is a nice nostalgic respite from the label’s tech death overload.

Producer Joe Cincotta (Suffocation, Cognitive, Catastrophic, Dehumanized) gives the album an instantly recognizable New York style, guitar tone and sound that allows the trademark slams and salvos to shudder and heave with aplomb with nary a bass drop in sight.  The blast beats are OK, if hardly the bands forte (as shown to start otherwise pummeling third track “The Pageantry of Savagery”), but the style and this band has always been about knuckle dragging grooves and slams and Imperium delivers in that area with each track.

From opener “Fabricating Bliss” to closer “Castigo Corpus Meum” the album is no frills and no bullshit. Even with couple of more very small atmospheric intros (album standout, “Patterns  of Force: Act 1-The Discovery”, closer “Castigo Corpus Meum”), the album just rumbles with beef and bad intentions that recall the classic NYDM sound perfectly as there’s plenty of those single guitar, “here comes a groove” lead in riffs that signal pit inducing chaos with little care for bullshit. The album’s killer, three part centerpiece, “Patterns of Force” is a killer trio of tracks ending with “Act 3 -Aftermath”, starting with a massive groove that Dying Fetus would kill for.

Admittedly, the following tracks “Placate the Ancients” and “In the Absence of Soul” have a hard act to follow, so they area bit left out, but the closing track “Castigo Corpus Meum” ends the album of a fine note with a moody atmospheric moment that ends the albums perfectly and shows a more developed side to Internal Bleeding’s simple sound.

A few notable guest musicians appear on Imperium including Suffocation’s Frank Mullen and Terrance Hobbs on “Patterns of Force” as well as original vocalist and our own current staff writer Frank Rini delivering a few impressive growls and bellows on “The Vistitant” and “Patterns of Force”, making this a nice New Yawk death metal affair and one that signals a solid return from a band that, while never elevated to Suffocation standards, deserved a little credit for for their impact in the scene.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
October 3rd, 2014


  1. Commented by: Chris Pervelis

    Thanks for taking the time to review the album. I’m really happy you liked the trilogy of songs as well as Castigo Corpus Meum, because that’s where we are heading in the future — plenty of slam, but with more dimension to it. Lots of reviewers have complimented the same two songs and it’s exciting to see that our boundary pushing is being accepted both by fans and critics alike. Thank you, this review was very constructive and helpful. Chris – IB

  2. Commented by: F.RINI

    Erik-great review and thx for the shout out. Glad you dig the album. IB did it right and put out one helluva reunion album. Punishing!

  3. Commented by: Brad

    I’m a sucker for NY death metal. Take my money you bastards!

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