Released: 2005, Cruz Del Sur Music
Infliction is an Italian band that, surprise!, does not play power metal or brutal death metal. Formed back in 1995, the band has slowly forged a sound of their own, a result of playing many gigs with varied musicians and seemingly having a number of friends throughout the metal scene. To wit: members of Ancient and Mork Gryning guested on their 2002 debut THE FAINT SMELL OF SUICIDE, and vocalist Bjorn is also the singer for Night In Gales and The Very End.
THE SILENCER is the band’s sophomore disc, but it sounds like the product of a band that has 20 years under their belts. Effortlessly mixing prog-metal, melodic death metal, thrash, and Sentenced, Infliction may seem at first glance to bounce aimlessly between influences, but somehow the album coheres into a vicious, pummeling yet catchy whole. Sound confusing? It’s not really, because these guys are incredible song writers, able to create hooky, yet challenging music. The third track, “Poisonradio” is a perfect example of this, beginning as a battering melo-death screamer, but easily switching into a progressive, melodic bridge and chorus section, before flying back into the death metal again. As easily as the band switches musical gears, so does Bjorn manage to vary his vocals – he’s equally good at death growls and a deep melodic voice (not doom metal deep though). He truly helps the overall mood of the album switch between angry and brooding when necessary. And as I said, the whole thing is damn catchy throughout!
There are a couple of weaker tracks on here, but they are overwhelmed by the sheer brilliance of the rest. Also of special note is the band’s crunchy cover of Ultravox’s hit “The Voice”. Infliction takes the synth-ridden pop song and turns it into a driving, atmospheric metal anthem. Very cool. Suffice it to say that this is another album that, had I heard it last year, would have made an appearance on my Top 20 list – don’t miss this one!