Infernaeon - "Genesis To Nemesis" (CD)
"Genesis To Nemesis" track listing:
1. Into The N.O.X. (3:02)
2. First Of The Fallen (6:33)
3. Lilith Ave. Satanas (6:17)
4. Legacy Of Kane (5:36)
5. Ziasudra (4:58)
6. Creeping Death (Metallica Cover) (6:39)
7. The Scar Of David (6:55)
8. Immaculate Deception (5:12)
9. Graven Image (5:15)
10. Revelations (5:46)
Reviewed by heavytothebone2 on November 15, 2010
The Florida death metal scene has given us legendary acts like Cannibal Corpse, Deicide, and Morbid Angel. It must be something in the water or maybe being in such a hot climate makes people angry and bitter, but Florida is the place to be when it comes to death metal. Infernaeon is another band from the area that is immersed in the art of blasphemy and contempt at religious icons. Their sophomore album, “Genesis to Nemesis,” is a concept piece that reworks the stories of the Bible into a more realistic tone. The premise is sound and the band does a striking job with the subject matter, though the songwriting is too hit-or-miss for a lasting resonance.
The big selling point to Infernaeon is the keyboards. The impressive display put on with dueling piano and synth on instrumental opener “Into The N.O.X” is a prime attribute to the epic mood that is set throughout the album. It’s a shame that the keys are regaled to background fodder for the rest of the album, its synth melodies charging in for brief moments in each song. The majestic intro to “Legacy of Kane” is the only other instance where the keys feel like a primary tool, instead of a random placeholder for faux atmosphere.
Since 2007’s “A Symphony of Suffering,” the band has gone through major line-up shifts. With two new guitarists comes a flashier sound on “Genesis to Nemesis.” The solos are sharp, energetic bouts of shredding that don’t enhance the music. Like the debut album, most songs eclipse five minutes, with a melodic touch that is a product of the keys and the occasional slow moment. The clean guitars on “The Scar of David” are a tiny sign of progression that break up the caustic pace contained throughout.
The multi-faceted vocals from Brian Werner make even the most academic track worth suffering through. His screams are sharp and his wide range of growls adds a hint of personality. It’s too bad that much of the album is uninspired death metal that doesn’t engage in a different avenue than everybody else. The anthem-vibe of “Revelations” will raise plenty of devil horns and “Immaculate Deception” is a catchy alternative to the rest of the toxic tempos, but very little else stands out.
The band rolls out plenty of star power in the form of guest appearances to lend a credible aura to the album. Erik Rutan provides his menacing voice to “Legacy of Kane,” while GWAR’s Oderus Urungus trades off with Werner on an adequate cover of Metallica’s classic “Creeping Death.” Putting the cover on the album was a stroke of genius from Infernaeon, as it is seamlessly integrated into the overall concept of the album.
“Genesis to Nemesis” is competent with its symphonic death metal design. A few black metal passages on “Revelations” and “Lilith Ave. Satanas” have an old-school flavor, but this is largely Florida-style metal. Infernaeon succeeds on a musical level, but stumbles when it comes to crafting memorable songs. The keyboards are underutilized and a few lengthy tracks get to the point of gratuitous. The band isn’t awful in the slightest bit, but there isn’t anything about “Genesis to Nemesis” that screams “must-listen.”
Highs: Great list of guest musicians involved, Brian Werner's variety of growls and screams, sharp guitar work from the two new members
Lows: Keyboard work is criminally underused, a few songs are too long, nothing distinct about the band's sound
Bottom line: An average sophomore album that has a few interesting moments, but nothing on it that screams "must-listen."
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