Having exhausted whatever (semi) creative impulses that may have lurked in their brazen style of heavily MARDUK-ified Black Metal, Czech veterans INFERNO have taken a decidedly different route on album nr 6. While I totally respect the band’s efforts to broaden their style, I’d be lying if I said that “Omniabsence Filled by His Greatness” represents a bold new chapter in the band’s lengthy career.
The potential is certainly there, as one would expect from such a seasoned band, but it’s not quite smooth sailing in terms of actual execution. The searing aggression found on their previous releases is still manifests itself on a few occasions but for the most part it is rendered toothless by the sheer amount of incoherent riffs and a misguided pursuit of atmosphere by means of jangly interludes and songs that pretty much all overstay their welcome. With songs that routinely breach the 8 minute mark and an increased emphasis on atonality, “Omniabsence…” is an album that meanders more than it marauds.
“The Funeral of Existence” features more than a few serrated riff excursions into punchier, more coherent territory, and those eerie leads on “The Vertical Fissure of the Most Distant End” do indeed imbue it with the requisite mystical atmosphere, but it’s not quite enough to propel the album beyond mediocrity. The abundance of rather formless ideas ultimately weighs the album down. It’s telling that a band like SZRON can churns out similar albums with half the amount of riffs and tempo changes and still conjure up a significantly more haunting and interesting sound. Sure, they’re repetitive but at least they know how to pen a good riff or two – something that seems to have eluded INFERNO this time around.
(Online October 18, 2013)