Into Eternity - Buried in Oblivion
Century Media
Progressive Melodic Death Metal with Multiple Vocal Choices
10 songs (44'32")
Release year: 2004
Into Eternity, Century Media
Reviewed by Alex
Album of the month

There are some bands that when their new CD comes out, you just have to check it out. Into Eternity is one of those bands for me. Even though I am probably one of the very few people who has their self-titled full length (with a green cover), and I can boast that I followed this band for a while, it was their 2002 debut on Century Media Dead or Dreaming that introduced this Canadian band to the broader audience. French Canadians have Kataklysm and Cryptopsy to be proud of, while Into Eternity hails from Regina, Saskatchewan and is a totally unique band. They tread the waters few wonder in, they combine death, progressive and melodic metal, and they do it awfully well.

I usually do not try and consider the new album in the context of how the previous one sounded. However, in the case of Into Eternity the sound bears such uniqueness, the 2002 effort is about the only reference I can use. And right from the get-go, as much as I liked Dead or Dreaming, Buried in Oblivion is a better, more mature effort. Mixing equal parts progressive melodies, harmonized and brutal vocals and heavy riffs in their metal you would expect Into Eternity to concentrate on one of those parts. They have exceeded expectations and improved all aspects of their music. The band did not mellow out or became in-your-face brutal outfit, they just elevated their own unique sound onto a higher plane.

Describing Buried in Oblivion track by track is pretty much a dead issue. However, if you need a point of reference again, I will tell you right now there is not an outright brutal track like Selling God. Yet, the heavy riffs are dispersed into just about every song (except acoustics, but more on that later), however, the melody rules supreme. The closest analog I could think of was Dead or Dreaming closer Identity which to me was very representative of where Into Eternity sound was going.

The band still continues to be equal parts Dream Theater, Rush, Iron Maiden and melodic death thrash metal. Harmonized vocals still carry a lot of melody, only they do not completely overtake the rest of the music like on the above mentioned self-titled album where they became nauseatingly sweet. The leads are still complex, progressive and sweeping, yet there are very spot-on, last just the right amount of time and do not go meandering off like it happened sometimes on Dead or Dreaming. The extreme vocals improved as well being about a 50/50 mix of deeper death grunts and hardcore screams. Unlike many other true death metal fans I am not averse to ‘core screaming, so it never bothered me with Into Eternity in the first place. Still, meatier death grunts are a very welcome sight on Buried in Oblivion. The rhythm section can go blasting (Splintered Visions and 3 Dimensional Aperture) and it can be incredibly technical, its time changes and off beats (Spiraling Into Depression, Isolation) are incredible. Some songs are almost pure progressive death metal bordering on Death final albums (3 Dimensional Aperture) while others are more straightforward speedy numbers (Point of Uncertainty). Dark playfulness of Beginning of the End contrasts progressive nature of Isolation.

The last three tracks of the CD bear a resemblance of “trilogy”. Buried in Oblivion and Morose Seclusion are incredible acoustic tunes while the subdued nature of Black Sea of Agony is interrupted midway by superfast snare explosion and ripping lead. I dare to say that the acoustic guitar definition on the title track comes close to the incredible Voice of the Soul on Death’s Sound of Perseverance. And if Chuck (RIP) could sing in clean voice he would have picked Into Eternity style of doing it, especially considering the dark introspective lyrics of the song. Keyboards present on “trilogy” tracks are adding well to the atmosphere.

Into Eternity line-up has changed slightly from the previous album, but the core members are still there: Tim Roth, Scott Crall and Jim Austin. Scott’s brother Chris (I presume he is his brother) adds another layer of lead vocals, and just about everybody contributes with some kind of vocal backing, be it harsh or clean. Buried in Oblivion production is also clearer and improved over Dead or Dreaming, not that it was bad on the latter. Clarity of production is absolutely essential for Into Eternity as layering in their music could not be messed up to achieve the most impact.

If there ever was a definition of dichotomy – two different opposite trends jammed into a one single whole – Into Eternity embodies it perfectly. While they are undoubtedly their own unique band (I have mentioned this a dozen times already), some comparisons still persist. Shadows Fall comparison is legitimate, but not quite relevant. Shadows Fall started as a much more hardcore inclined outfit and progressed on. Into Eternity has never been a pure hardcore. Nu-metal comparisons are simply plain ridiculous, but I will tell you this, if nu-metal ever starts churning out bands like Into Eternity I will become a fan in an instant. To those of you who knew about this band, you should be on your way to the store buying Buried in Oblivion, to those of you who appreciate going out on the limb, style crossover and can stand harsh vocals, I also strongly recommend it.

Killing Songs :
Splintered Visions, 3 Dimensional Aperture, Beginning of the End, Isolation, Buried in Oblivion, Black Sea of Agony, Morose Seclusion
Alex quoted 90 / 100
Other albums by Into Eternity that we have reviewed:
Into Eternity - The Incurable Tragedy reviewed by Aleksie and quoted 92 / 100
Into Eternity - The Scattering Of Ashes reviewed by Kayla and quoted 93 / 100
Into Eternity - Dead Or Dreaming reviewed by Crims and quoted 88 / 100
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