BURNING INSIDE can maybe be considered as the main band of Richard 'Master of the sticks' Christy. In fact, though this incredibly talented drummer lent his skills to a lot of bands (ICED EARTH, DEMONS AND WIZARDS, CONTROL DENIED) and can also be counted as a member of Chuck Schuldiner's legendary band (you'll be missed, Chuck), this is where he belongs. I mean, BURNING INSIDE is the only band in which he can fully show his composition abilities, writing most of the stuff. He also plays all the keyboards on the album, and I can say he's surprisingly good at it. Just listen to the two only-keyboards tracks of the record, namely "Disembodied Souls" and the closer "Within The Walls", and I'm sure you'll agree with me.
"Apparition" is the follow-up to the band's debut, "Eve Of The Entities", a really good album which topped my last year's playlist for quite a long time.
As you can easily guess, what the band offers us here is pure old-school Death Metal-greatness, following the path of their previous effort. If you know me, you also know I'm a sucker for that sub-genre, but as for this album it doesn't matter, 'cos "Apparition" is a top-notch album, no matter from which standpoint you look at it.
In the first place, all of the tracks here are bottom brutal and technical as fuck (and really, with a project by such a technical monster as Christy, did you expect anything different?), resembling some things of DEATH ("Human"-era). But okay, I know comparing BURNING INSIDE to DEATH is way too easy and commonplace, so let's move away.
The band's own sound also incorporates a few elements of the Scandinavian Melodic Death-scene (especially in some of the solos), but the straightforward brutality retained by the music is definitely prominent. However, labelling the band as an 'American Brutal Death Metal-act' is indeed reductive for these guys, 'cos the level of depth and complexity they put into each and every track is nothing less than impressive, and way more intense than the majority of Death Metal-bands out there. The only record I listened so far this year which I can compare to "Apparition" is the latest KRISIUN-album, and the comparison is fully suitable in terms of refinement of the song-writing, but the overall achievements are completely different. KRISIUN's effort was undeniably stuck into the MORBID ANGEL-sound, while the BURNING INSIDE-album, though not original at all, is a more personal work, no doubt 'bout it; plus their influences appear to be rather distant from MORBID ANGEL (by the way, if you're a dipstick for insane drummers like I am, you MUST have both albums or you'll burn in the pits of hell).
Well, to cut it short and avoiding this review to take pages, I won't come into the detail of the tracks, 'cos the whole album has to be listened and inferred in its entirety (I already know it'll take months to just understand a millionth of the drum fills contained here, but I still love the idea, see what a big weirdo I am?!).
In conclusion, I've to say I maybe liked "Ageless Venomous" a bit more than this, but to be fair this is objectively way more distinctive and solid.
Bottom line: maybe a bit outdated, "Apparition" is yet one of the best releases of the sub-genre.