Another year, another death metal band you’ve never heard tell of. Infra hail from Portugal (now checked off of the “Kronos’ global domination” list) and aim to please with groovy, dissonant blackened death that’s nearly as underground as the Earth’s mantle and comparably crushing. Twelve minutes of hate and fear prove that Infra have the chops, but do they bring anything new to the table?
The two-song EP’s first offering, “Communion,” plods through simple blackened grooves and midtempo blasts with comfort and tight execution, its frequent tempo shifts livening up the song’s intensely unremarkable riffing. The drums and vocals are cavernously produced, with a lot of reverb and echo for that retro black/death feel, pairing well with the crunch of the guitars. Infra‘s moment-to-moment sound succeeds, but in the writing department they have some work to do.
“Perversion of Sulphur,” the second and final offering from Initiation on the Ordeals of Lower Vibrations, fares rather better than “Communion” in the riffing department. While there’s nothing new here per se, the utilization of dissonance and feedback makes for a much more interesting listen. Quick tempo shifts, both absolute and apparent, once again serve to break up the simple tremolo riffing and release the tension created by the song’s quieter moments.
While Infra are by no means groundbreaking, Initiation… is a solid start for a band who have found a satisfying sound. A full length of this quality would be a disappointment, but as an EP, the music hits the spot and hints at better things to come. If you’re not the kind of metalhead that mainlines Behemoth and Belphegor, this mouthful of an EP serves as a light seasoning of blackened death for your day.
Label: Nuclear War Now! Productions
Websites: Too cvlt for the interwebs!
Release Dates: Out Worldwide: 01.15.2015