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Technical death metal is not necessarily my favourite thing, but that doesn’t mean that from time to time I don’t like to listen to some more technical, complex and brutal as fuck troops of death. Obviously I will always prefer my LPs of Asphyx, Dismember, Grave or Bolt Thrower over such Suffocation, Malevolent Creation, Decrepit Birth or Cannibal Corpse, but as I already said I do enjoy such music occasionally. Actually if it only has that something unique and intriguing, and is not just a mess of multiple riffing / sudden breaks / fast drumming / piggy vocals and over complexity, then it surely deserves my attention. Insision also belongs to that group of brutal death metal bands, which I like to listen to from time to time and whose severe music is able to shred me each time I listen to them. I already have three or four CDs of this band in my collection and for sure I will get some more stuff when the time is right. “Beneath the Folds of Flesh” is one of these albums, which I have and I must say that this CD is a must have for all those, who like their death metal to be brutal, fast, crushing, quite technical and severe… For sure in this style of music Insision – along with the likes of Severe Torture and Aeon – belongs to the best European bands of the past decade.
And don’t let yourself be misled by the origin of Insision, as their Swedish nationality doesn’t mean they have something in common with the classic Svensk Döds Metall – not at all. It is obvious that Insision has no trace of the classic Swedish death metal and in that aspect they are probably one of the very few bands from this country, which I know and which are staying away from their national metal heritage. Yeah, Strangulation, Visceral Bleeding, Aeon, Immersed in Blood, Spawn of Possession are some other examples for that, but Insision are probably among my two favourites – together with Aeon - holding the crown of brutal death metal in Sweden. Anyway, to describe the music on “Beneath the Folds of Flesh” one doesn’t have to be too innovative and think too long. Insision plays pretty much in the same vein as Severe Torture, Suffocation, Cannibal Corpse, Deranged, Deeds of Flesh and such monsters of brutal death metal. Generally “Beneath the Folds of Flesh” has nothing original or extraordinary to offer; they walk the well trodden and familiar path, but somehow they manage to crush me, because – let me put it as simply as I can: their music is awesome. The riffs on the album are great; there are obviously many, many fast parts, as well as some more complex arrangements, but luckily Insision has also some slower songs here and there, when the music is simpler but also easier to listen to, so that means the whole album isn’t so damn monotonous and one dimensional and so I can focus more on headbanging and swallow that brutal energy, which Insision delivers with pure joy. OK, there are some moments like the beginning of “Trapped Within”, which I am not a big fan of (actually this entire song is the one, which I like least from the whole CD), but who cares if there are also such killer tunes as “Before My Altar” (the best song on the album???), “Impamiiz Graa” and “Temple of Flesh”. The production of “Beneath the Folds of Flesh” may not be the most perfect; it is slightly on the raw edge and the guitars could have been more powerful and louder… but I get used to it after few minutes of listening, so not a major complain here on that aspect. All in all the album is a very good portion of brutal death metal and if you’re into the bands, which I have mentioned in this review then I must sincerely recommend you this CD; get ready for the slaughter!
Standout tracks: “Sado God”, “Before My Altar”, “Impamiiz Graa”, “Temple of Flesh”
Final rate: 70/100
As I read my December 2002 issue of Metal Maniacs for the first time, I was doing a general skim of the magazine and I was going through several pages until something caught my eye on page 36. Probably the reason that it caught my eye was because of the very first sentence in that page which was ‘Formed in 1997, Stockholm’s Insision is the complete antithesis of conventional Swedish death metal.’ I read the entire article then and found out more about the band called Insision. Eventually, I got all psyched up about them and started searching for their debut album called ‘Beneath The Folds Of Flesh’. Unfortunately, finding records of relatively unknown international metal bands is a luxury that many metalheads don’t get to enjoy here in Manila and so I had spend the next few years searching for it. Finally, my search came to an end as I finally obtained a copy of the record just recently and after weeks of headbanging to this death metal monstrosity, here I am to review it.
The article in Metal Maniacs was correct. Insision truly is the antithesis of conventional Swedish death metal. This simply means that those looking for something along the lines of Arch Enemy, The Haunted or Dark Tranquility won’t be very delighted about this record. Fans of old-school death metal, however, prepare to wet your pants for I can proudly say that Insision’s ‘Beneath The Folds Of Flesh’ is the perfect marriage of both Morbid Angel and Cannibal Corpse! Truth be told! And there’s chock full of stuff here that’s obviously influenced by those two bands as well by other bands in that line of death metal like Suffocation, Malevolent Creation and Deeds Of Flesh. And let’s not forget, these guys are Swedish!
‘Beneath The Folds Of Flesh’ is Inision’s label debut on Wicked World, a subsidiary of Earache. This album is initially what you would expect from the aforementioned bands that it is influenced by. Featuring nine catchy tracks that are quite unique in their own retrospective ways, the album is extremely heavy and quite diverse with tempos that like to play with your in-brain math in the heaviest technical way possible. The guitars are obviously downtuned like there’s no tomorrow to something like A-tuning wielding a gruesome, hair-raising heavy sound accompanied by some gifted soloing and occasional pinch harmonics as Roger Johansson and Toob Brynedal abuse their axes while Thomas Daun's drumming goes from mid-tempo paces to blistering blast beats and ear-pounding double bass. Carl Birath’s guttural vocals truly bring back memories of classics such as Slowly We Rot and Eaten Back To Life. The bass doesn’t fall back here either. In fact, Daniel Ekeroth’s bass is one of the key factors that are keeping the whole record really heavy and evil. All these elements combine to produce one blistering American-styled death metal record of that’s heavy, technical, fast and evil. The production doesn’t let these guys down. All of the instruments are set to their full potential so you can really expect a true musical onslaught here.
The songs are diverse in a way that each song has it own sets of heavy parts in many layers though they all use the same formula to achieve this. In the end, all of them came out as true death metal pieces each designed to send evil chills down our spines. And many of them incorporate sludgy breakdowns in the right parts that makes them heavy and evil fuck in the Morbid Angel way! The subject matter of the songs deals topics like death, anger, hate, H.P. Lovecraft-inspired themes and Satan himself. Standout tracks include the Barnes-fronted Cannibal Corpse-like opener, ‘World Impaled’, the furious speed-driven metalfest ‘Trapped Within’, the Suffocation-like ‘Temple Of Flesh’ and the technical closer ‘Ex Oblivione’. But really, each song has its own unique punch to it and together; they form an amazing headbanger’s paradise of an album. I’m quite happy for the Swedes that they’ve got bands like Insision keeping the spirit of old-school death metal alive in a country overrun by countless melodic death metal acts.
Death metal fans…don’t even think twice. Buy this album right away the moment you see it in a record store. It’s worth your cash, I’m telling you. Hell, this is U.S.-styled death metal that’s better than anything bands such as Morbid Angel and Malevolent Creation have put out in recent years. Actually, right now, they’re my new death metal heroes, hehehe!
Brutal, relentless and loud. Those three words decribe pretty well what the essence of this band is. Insision has only two gears, fast and faster. One might think that would get redundant on a full disc, but fuck no. These guys apply loads and loads of riffs in different structures, giving them just enough variation to last. They apply minimal melody and still turn their songs way more memorable than any of the average clean-vocal emo chorus bands of 2005.
There are three clear highlights among the songs:
"World Impaled" opens up the album with a huge fucking blow, quickly introducing Carl Birath's brutalizing growl. The chorus is also an excellent testament to their combination of brutality and memorability.
"Before My Altar" is Insision's classic live staple and one of my favourite brutal Death Metal-numbers ever. It's more or less their classic sound, just completely perfected within one song.
"My Fever" is also one hell of a song. Once again a typical Insision track, just even more full of great riffs and punishing growls. Carl Birath's effort on the vocals in this one is just unbelievable. He sounds virtually unhuman, growling low as fuck while not losing a single ounce of volume.
Basically, if you haven't gotten it by now, this band is really fucking good. This is some of the best brutal Death Metal available, by one of those bands who give us swedes a hope of getting a decent metal scene again.
Insision's debut for Earache / Wicked World, and their fourth altogether (2 independent EPs, and a full length Split CD) stands as one of the most solid albums to come from the genre in quite some time. The first thing I noticed about this CD is the straying away from the current trend of using a horror movie sample at the beginning of every song to distinguish one from another. Such is not the case with "Beneath The Folds of Flesh"...Each song has it's own very unique and individual groove to it, some being a little more memorable than others. Their arrangements are inventive, with very little use of false harmonics and palm muted "chug" riffs as intrinsive parts of the rhythm. The songs are more often than not, propelled by the precise drumwork, and deep growler Carl Birath. The production is very powerful and full, with every instrument coming through loud and clear. The only minor disappointment I had with this album was the re-recording and re-working of some of their older tunes (Before My Altar, Sado God). While the new and "improved" versions sound every bit as crushing in their own way, I still prefer the older ones. To sum it all up, If you like Death Metal...You like Insision. A VERY worthy purchase.