8 Aug 2014

Critical Insanity - Through the Infinite Darkness [Demo] (2013, Self-released)

They say imitation is the highest form of flattery. In thrash we've got our fair share of Big 4 imitators, obviously with varying degrees of success and skill. But there's little imitation to be found with Critical Insanity, a band of youngsters who've been roaming the streets of Poland since 2012. Instead they've crafted their own unique sound, a feat many spend years trying to accomplish.

Mind you being unique isn't inherently a good thing. Describing Critical Insanity's music on Through the Infinite Darkness, the band's first release, seems simple at first; Gunning all engines, it's full speed ahead through the wastelands, crashing through ruins guns blazing to the sound of tightly knit, no nonsense guitars and drums beating like a diesel engine revving up. At a glance most will write it off as standard thrash metal.

If we peel off the outer layers of Critical Insanity's album length debut demo their inner workings are laid bare. The vocals are oddly creeping, like a stalker lurking outside your window, noisily masturbating as you're trying to fall asleep. This pseudo-melodic half-crooning somehow fits the slower paced songs like Goblet of Gore, but at other times seems like a fish out of water when paired with the high speeds that the band otherwise present in their assortment of compositions. And the compositions in themselves are immaculately cunning.

It is demo material at best, and requires a lot of work. The bass fulfills its thankless role in the most captivating of ways, providing volley after volley of the thrilling rumbles that metal builds upon. The riffing is brutal and fast - All the fundamental building blocks of thrash are present. However the more brain-tingling aspects gleam in their absence. There are a few tracks which adequately fill the void of boredom created by the majority of the demo, but only just so. With nine tracks coming to a total of about 35 minutes, the FUCK YEAH moments are too few and far apart. I suppose it could be excused with the fact that Through the Infinite Darkness is, after only, just a demo, but it's a dog-eat-dog world with thousands of bands more or less competing against each other, and in that regard Critical Insanity still needs an edge to be able to compete. 6/10 guitars.

1. Hopeless
2. Slavedriver
3. Harbringer of Calamity
4. Haunting the Idolators
5. Through the Infinite Darkness
6. Goblet of Gore
7. Aboriginal War
8. Proselytism Real
9. Critical Insanity

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