Sunday, April 24, 2011

INFESTUS - E x | I s t CD review

INFESTUS - E x | I s t CD
Debemur Morti Productions
Genre: Black Metal
Rating: 3/5

For those of you don't remember my review ramblings from the first Scumfeast Metal website I held the second INFESTUS release, Chroniken des Ablebens, in high regard. That was back in 2008 and now after a few years of silence INFESTUS mainman Andras is back although without vocalist Dagon, who I just discovered had left last year. Now it's clearly a one man one vision project. As the last full length was a concept album this one here is in a way as well if you consider it's the concept born of a mentally depraved mind. Musically E x | I s t leans into the avant garde tradition of Black Metal but not far enough that it goes over the edge and crashes into shoe gazing Indie Rock mimicry. This one sits somewhere within the bracketed realm of DRUDKH. The tones are depressive at some points like on the opener "Akoasma" which draws you into the mind of Andras. It's not a very nice place, mind you, but it's a short ambient number considering most of the songs on here are over the eight minute mark. Once inside you're trapped by barrages of blast beats, traditionally grim riffs which cascade over you and Andras's vocals which sound like those of a tortured beast that lives in the Black Forest of Germany.

At times E x | I s t seems to recycle on itself with sleep inducing track patterns repeating especially in the openings and closings of cuts. "Darkness Blazing in the Flame of Fire" starts out as a repeat of the opener except for the Spanish flavored acoustic guitar interlude. From beauty we turn to a world of darkness and the song becomes one of the releases more engaging tracks that contains an avalanche of sound that comes down upon the listener. Another standout track which breaks from the dark narcotic is "Mirror Mind Reality". The cut comes across as utterly shocking compared to the lion's share of E x | I s t with Andras actually sounding violent even choking on an utterance of a clean vocal wail. "Down Spiral Depersonification" is an early track where you believe things get rolling with a full on barrage of blast beats and traditionally grim riffs. There are moments on "Der Blick hinaus" that actually contain melody which grips you until the eerie ambiance covers everything up again like a shroud. That's part of the downside to this release. At first you're introduced to an agony laden landscape which is exciting to the listener but is quickly covered up in a layer of despair which permeates almost everything on here. Within the dark recesses of Andras's mind exists some space which needs filling.



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