Obscure Infinity - Dawn of Winter
Obscure Domain
Death Metal
11 songs (46:11)
Release year: 2010
Official Myspace, Obscure Domain
Reviewed by Charles
This is a worthy death metal debut album from Germany’s Obscure Infinity. Unmistakably and uncompromisingly old-school in approach, there is a real early-90s energy to this that should, momentarily at least, numb the desperate urges of any insane science genii who may be working furiously on a time machine that will take them back to the Florida (or Sweden) of 20 years ago. It seems like time wasted to list the obvious influences. The band’s myspace presents a transatlantic mishmash of the classics; Morbid Angel, Bolt Thrower, Entombed, Atheist, Pestilence, Dismember… I suppose I could just list bands for 400 words but no doubt somebody would complain about that. Pedants!

Anyway, that list should indicate that this classicist death metal chops and changes between different but equally heavy influences. Indulgent semi-regular synth interludes put me in mind of Spheres (and occasionally lovely acoustic fadeouts reminiscent of Opeth) but generally any progressive influence is swept angrily away during the proper tracks. Excluding the creepy introduction, real opener Sacrificial Ritual is ferociously heavy, but instantly likable, tirade of deep, crunching riffing and gruntingly guttural vocals which manages to gain an extra layer of intensity by switching nimbly into hyperblasting, Melechesh-like gargles of blackness. And so it continues, a forceful procession of face-stamping death metal riffing.

Do the band, then, do enough to avoid monotony across a 45 minute running length? Despite the good points, rapt attention will begin to wain unless you really can’t get enough of this type of music. The longer songs here (two come in at over seven minutes) make a valiant effort to mix things up. Everlasting Fires, for example, starts life as a heroically fast, lead guitar-led gallop in the vein of Dismember but becomes darker and eerier as goes on, culminating in a slower churn over which mysterious voices start chanting. It’s a collection of neat moments which perhaps feels a bit cobbled together as an epic. Not that I would discourage them from this sort of thing- to make it work, though, I think they’d need to step a bit further back from their death metal template and look to generate more light and shade. Thus it’s the shorter, sharper shocks like the aforementioned opener and the rabid Wreak Havoc that are what impress most.

Trying to form a conclusion, then, seems like a no-brainer. Dawn of Winter is a good album but not a great one. It packs a real punch but then keeps hitting for a good while after its victim has degenerated into a bloody pulp and the rubbernecking onlookers have called the police and gone home. More concision and Obscure Infinity will be intimidating preachers of death metal orthodoxy.

Killing Songs :
Sacrificial Ritual, Wreak Havoc- A Blackened Mind
Charles quoted 71 / 100
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