By Nico Grymnir Davidson of Valkyrian Music
Infernal Creation have become a driving force in the UK’s metal underground, rising in their underground fame like the Roman Empire at the height of its glory. The first full length in what will no doubt be their everlasting legacy, The Serpent Seed Doctrine, has finally been released.
In the beginning, the album is somewhat lacking, as can heard in the introduction of “We The Serpent Seed“, which leaves the listener both disinterested and confused to as what genre the band actually are due to its somewhat experimental-meets-industrial-meets-alternative introduction. The track does improve though, proving to be a fairly strong black metal anthem. “Cataclysm” is a take-no-prisoners type of track as it relentlessly smashes and mauls its way into the ears of the listener like the raging minotaur of Crete. The vocal work is powerful and well refined, which helps the song stand out a lot.
The album next progresses into “Plague Upon Plague“, another track with an unrelenting attitude and sound. The drums and guitars make for a perfect unholy alliance of brutality with the vocals leading the charge into a potentially blasphemous yet enjoyable piece of musical craftsmanship. The vocals are diverse throughout the song, keeping the sound fresh and original compared to the majority of black metal bands. The breakdown – or at least I assume it to be a breakdown – is ingeniously placed, preventing the song from becoming stale. “Omega Cult” slows the pace down but still delivers an all mighty bang. The drum work is different to that of the previous tracks but still has its place perfectly constructed into the music. Some of the riffs are softer but still bring the raw sound.
The introduction of “The Faceless Prophet” is an unexpected comedown from the heaviness of tracks past. If folk-styled acoustic introductions aren’t your cup of tea, then the beginning of “The Faceless Prophet” isn’t for you but the misanthropic compositions do make a loud and barbaric appearance, so all is not lost with the song. “Angel of Endless Hunger” continues the flow of face melting aggression with a touch of in-your-face vocal work and some slightly melodic licks in between some vocal parts. “Cruciatus Vobiscum” – an obviously Latin named song which I don’t know the meaning of as I’ve always being too lazy to full learn Latin, except for the motto of my ancestors but that’s a different story completely – is very Cradle Of Filth meets Dimmu Borgir with a hint of possible old school Hecate Enthroned influences at the beginning. Not that it’s a bad thing, as it means the fans of symphonic black metal have something to enjoy about the album now. Fortunately for those who prefer metal without the symphonic and keyboard elements, the track takes on a grimmer, more violent old school black metal approach after the introduction with some very unique vocal work.
“War Is Worship” starts with a combination of guitar and military styled snare sections before the vocals signal a change of pace, structure and sound in the song. The guitars offer up small little tastes of some melodic work, leaving the listener hungry for bigger portions of melodic riffs, which sadly do not occur. Prodding on towards the end of the album comes “The Insidious Gospel” which has a truly fascinating introduction made up of a slow constant guitar section with added thrash-like guitar sections as well. The guitars have a rough, unrefined sound, adding to the musical mastery of the composition and the song. The album comes to a close with “Serpent Messiah“, a song that offers up a soft and somewhat progressive sounding introduction before creating a storm of cold and merciless fury in the form of raging guitars and drums. The vocals add that extra aspect of a frostbitten sound to the music. The guitar solo comes as a massive surprise like the end of one of M. Night Shyamalan’s films but is well played and just fits in perfectly.
“The Serpent Seed Doctrine” is to black metal as what The Satanic Bible is to faux-devil worshippers: A priceless treasure. The only difference being is that “The Serpent Seed Doctrine” wasn’t created by church hating lunatics and is a damn sight lot more enjoyable. For a debut album, it’s very good though there are a few things that need working upon.
Devil horns Rating: \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/