Inferno - Basade En Hechos Reales - (8/10)
Published on January 19, 2019
I was looking for something to cleanse my pallet after January birthed a slew of disappointing thrash metal releases. I’m looking no more because Spain has come to my aid and birthed Basado En Hechos Reales, the sophomore album of Ceuta quintet Inferno. I’ve always wanted to know a band called Inferno, and it warms my heart to learn that they’re not bad – in fact, they’re great. This is one of those modern acts who formed during the creative peak of the thrash revival in 2009 and have since released only an EP and their first album Genetica Humana back in 2017. They seem to be on the right track, as this new record improves every aspect of the debut from the songwriting down to the brilliant artwork (which absolutely reeks of Repka-worship).
A glance at the cover art should tell you not to expect boundary-breaking innovation, but Basado En Hechos Reales does provide all the good stuff you would expect from a meat ‘n’ potatoes thrash metal band post-2010. Vicious riffs, breakneck speed and a seriously punchy vocal performance; what’s not to like? What gives Inferno their own distinct flavour is the gritty production quality which allows each instrument to shine whilst retaining that wonderfully raw retro-thrash vibe. Also, utilizing their native Spanish tongue for the whole album provides a unique flair. This new album is also, thankfully, quite brief. 33 minutes is more enough to make a statement, embellish your songwriting and leave the listener craving more.
Even without being a fluent Spanish speaker, this LP is weirdly accessible and tracks with particular hooks like “Tu Sucio Dinero” and “Condenado A Vivir” will force themselves into your mind with their infectious vocal patterns and chainsaw riffs. Speaking of riffs, Inferno churn out some belters which bore their way into your head without being mind-numbing or overly complex. The main riff to “Apriétate El Bozal”, for example, cuts like a fuckin’ razor; whilst the 1:02 mark in opener “Ruega Por Nosotros” threatens to melt your face off. The Spaniards absolutely thrive when working at this kind of rapid-fire velocity. Miguel Osuna’s performance behind the kit is stellar, ranging from pounding grooves to full-on blastbeat assaults (of which this album has its fair few!). And vocalist Juan Manuel León deserves praise for his wholesome growls which strike with impact yet remain completely decipherable.
It’s refreshing to experience a modern thrash album with some decent variety, especially in the tempo department. Sure, this is all ball-busting, furious stuff – but it can blaze away with the galloping speed of rippers like the finale “Noches Sin Tregua”, or beat us into submission with some mid-tempo hammers like “Exterminio”. Either way, you’re sure to have a rollicking good time, whilst keeping your brain in gear with some politically-charged lyrics. As stated previously, this won’t push envelopes, break boundaries or innovate – but you will not hear a more enjoyable slice of thrash metal this month. Way to fly the flag for thrash this month, guys – show the rest of ’em who’s boss!
For fans of: Slayer, S.O.D, Solstice, Carnivore.