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Infernal Wrath – Inside Of Me

  • Review by: Ananth Bevinahally

My first encounter with Infernal Wrath was at Rock Ethos 09, though I was aware of their line-up which consisted of some ex-DR musicians. I was amazed by that particular performance and later saw them at the Oktoberfest [where they were the epitome of tightness] and purchased my copy of ‘Inside Of Me’.

Essentially playing Old School Death Metal, IW has ambient and Indian undertones, which is quite an interesting facet of their music. Lyrically, being a tad philosophical, Inside Of Me is about a journey of self-realization. Breaking away from the norms of the archetypical Death Metal band, they incorporate ethereal sounds and acoustic guitars in ‘Truth’ and ‘The Creation of the Lotus’. Pradeep’s expertise is praiseworthy, belting out solos with ease, completely in place and with no instance of overplay.

The album and their shows begin with Truth. This song truly gives me the chills with the usage of the Didgeridoo, traditional bells/chimes and the aforementioned acoustic guitars. The guitar melody sets the tone for the rest of the album and is one of the rather epic ways to start an album. I was just a little surprised that the eerie alaap sounding ‘aah aah’ by Vian was missing in the studio version. With the title track, they get into the brutal onslaught that they are famous for. JP’s renowned drumming kicks in and sustains for the entire length of the album, in what I consider probably one of the best extreme metal percussive performance. I liked Afaque’s deep growls though some people may take a while to get used to it. Heavy guitars delivered flawlessly mete out extreme metal riffing and Indian-esque melodies the way Bloodbath [the best example that I can think of now] uses them. The tune from Truth finds itself in parts of Inside Of Me and Behold Ezekiel.

I haven’t really read any interviews with these guys, which would probably shed some more light about the concept, which to me is almost like another instrument. From what I can infer, it begins with Ezekiel, a prophet in all the three Abrahamic religions, who prophesized the construction of a third Jewish temple in Jerusalem [the second temple was at the location of the Dome of the Rock]. The story then moves through an indefinite amount of time, presumably until the apocalypse, when the destruction of the said third temple takes place.  There is a Buddhist connection to the story with the Lotus symbolism and Siddhartha as the final track.

Inside Of Me really is an album centric release, with an emphasis on the whole as against individual songs lumped together. Some of my favourite moments in the album are the orchestration and solo in ‘At the Foothills of Palestine’. There is a tasteful usage of samples throughout the album, which adds colour to any studio release. I’m actually disappointed that they haven’t achieved the acclaim that they deserve. Their shows reflect great showmanship with a tremendous amount of energy and as I had mentioned earlier, they are incredibly tight without any noticeable flaws. Some people might wonder that their usage of other elements is pretentious, but that notion must be dispelled as I don’t notice an inkling of poseur-ness. In short, this album is a must have for any Indian extreme metal fan and I give it a 4.5 on 5.