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Edge of Sanity - Infernal CD (album) cover

INFERNAL

Edge of Sanity

 

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

2.76 | 28 ratings

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UMUR
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars "Infernal" is the 6th full-length studio album by Swedish death metal act Edge of Sanity. The album was released through Black Mark Production in February 1997. Following up an almost universally praised album like "Crimson (1996)" must have been a daunting task for the band. Add to that the huge expectations from the fans, and the fact that the band was falling apart because of musical differences around the time of recording "Infernal" and you have a major part of the explanation why "Infernal" is not only vastly inferior to it´s predecessor, but also an incohesive and overall disappointing release judged on it´s own merits.

The album simply sounds like it´s recorded by two different acts and when you look at who´s playing what on the album, it soon becomes apparent that that´s exactly the case. Tracks 1, 3, 6, 7, and 11 on the album are recorded by Dan Swanö (Guitar, Bass and Vocals) and drummmer Benny Larsson without participation from the rest of the band. Tracks 2 and 4 feature almost all other band members except Dan Swanö, while track 5, 8, 9 and 10 feature all members.

It´s not that such an approach can´t work and it does work in some cases, but here Edge of Sanity obviously struggle to make ends meet. The material on the album, which were recorded solely by Dan Swanö and Benny Larsson, are clearly the standout tracks on "Infernal", while the remaining tracks more or less fit the filler definition. Tracks like "Hell Is Where the Heart Is", "15:36", and "Forever Together Forever" could quality wise easily have fit on any of the preceding releases by the band, but overall there are not enough memorable tracks featured on the album. Other standout tracks include "Damned (By the Damned)" and the melodic clean sung "Losing Myself".

"Infernal" is still a reasonably good quality release though (the musicianship is strong and the sound production is powerful and detailed), and even the tracks which are clearly fillers ("Helter Skelter", "The Bleakness of It All", and "Inferno" are examples of that), do feature some redeeming qualities. It doesn´t change the fact that "Infernal" is a bit of a disappointment, when you compare it to the last couple of releases by the band. The incoherence of the material makes it a fragmented listen, which never really feels like a satisfying whole. It´s the sound of a once great act coming to an end. A 3.5 star (70%) rating is still deserved though.

UMUR | 3/5 |

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