Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Infernal Revulsion - An Epic Conviction (Sevared Records; 2011)

Today we have a rather unique treat. Infernal Revulsion have released An Epic Conviction, which is a compilation of their two full lengths, plus a new song. Other than Devourment's mighty 1.3.8 and Vomit Remnants' discography, I can't think of any off the top of my head. For those who haven't heard of Infernal Revulsion, they're an ultra-heavy and rifftastic slam band from Japan.

Two questions arise from a release like this. The first is how consistent is the quality? There's material from different times and likely different lineups. It's annoying when half of a compilation sucks and half is good. This was my primary concern going into the album. I loved Infernal Revulsion's first album Devastate Under Hallucination. It was my favorite brutal death album of 2007. It features huge riffs, crushing slams, and violent gutturals. It immerses you into the world of the mass murderer featured in the cover art. It's a very high quality album. Infernal Revulsion's second album, Dead But Breathing, on the other hand, was a let down. It wasn't terrible, but it wasn't close to its predecessor. Everything sounded worse. In my review, I wrote that "Infernal Revulsion pretty much wrote the same album as their debut, they just didn't do it as well." That was pretty much the problem with Dead But Breathing.

That brings me to the next question, does this compilation give me anything new? The answer to this is yes. Infernal Revulsion rerecorded (or remixed or reproduced) Dead But Breathing, and it sounds a lot better. In my review, I said that Dead But Breathing had a full and thick production, and it did. But in the new version, Infernal Revulsion made that full and thick production closer and wider sounding. As I mentioned earlier, Infernal Revulsion's strength is writing seriously heavy riffs and slams. The new version of Dead But Breathing greatly accentuates those qualities compared to the original. The difference is not immediately noticeable, but going back to the old one sounds like you are listening to the album from the other side of a wall. I have to commend the band here. Dead But Breathing is still not as good as it's predecessor, but with this rerecord they turned a flawed album into a good one.

The new song "Blemished" is also quite good. It features some slick guitar work, the perfected production and of course Infernal Revulsion's trademark heaviness. Great pit riffs plus a very menacing feeling throughout. There's even a Suffocationesque solo. This gives me hope for their next release.

Should you get this album? I'd say if you haven't listened to Infernal Revulsion before, this is a good place to start. It's their complete discography to date all in one place, and shows them at their best. If you are like me and loved the first album, but wished Dead But Breathing was better, I'd also recommend getting it since that is the main improvement. If you weren't keen on Infernal Revulsion before this, then there's not a lot new here to change your mind.

I have to give a lot of credit to Infernal Revulsion on this one, this is exactly what one would want out of a compilation.

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