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Exceeds Expectations - 80%

hexen, March 24th, 2012

My perspective has been that Psycroptic have only ever written two albums which have granted them the reputation they maintain. To any death metal fan who has been following this virtuous quartet, you'll recognize that even though their dexterity, song writing and production has increased, become faster and rawer, there was always that missing component since Chalky left the band - a vocalist who is literally unmatched in the death metal/black metal/ thrash metal arena.

For the two albums proceeding Psycroptic's debut and their masterpiece, "The Sceptor of the Ancients" - we had to deal with a vocalist who could neither imitate or refine his own abilities. Peppiatt is of course a very talented vocalist, yet talent in and of itself is not a prerequisite for success. Sure, he does somewhat manage to blend in, and Psycroptics latest two albums, "(Ob)Servant" and "Symbols of Failure" do impress musically, but with Peppiatt in the mix, the reviews where never going to be that high.

This however, is the album that should have come third. On "The Inherited Repression", we now see a band which is willing to diversify its sound, experiment and as we've become accustomed, impress us with their mix of highly dextrous, unparalleled musicianship and song writing while even delivering admirably original and melodious vocals. This is an album which will once again bring back Psycroptic fans to pick up a record and listen to it from beginning to end.

The guitar is undeniably creative, tactical and well placed throughout the whole record. The stringed half of the Haley brothers has managed to come up with some quite entertaining, sometimes brutal - always catchy riffing. His skills are of course the envy of most guitar players, as his grandiose mixture of palm mute, chicken and tremolo picking have only been refined over the course of so many years. One does wish he did play solos, even the occasional one, yet it seems Mr. Haley has no interest in such.

Drums are actually, somewhat of a letdown. Yes, David Haley is extremely talented, fast drummer. Yet one wishes he would take the next step and begin incorporating some musically complex rhythms, perhaps some progressive beats even to complement the outrageous guitar skills of his brother. Naturally, the blast beats and incessant fills are pleasant to hear. Bass is not granted much of a review because, and this does take a few points off the album, Grant is almost inaudible most of the team, and when he is not, he's usually doing nothing extraordinary.

Overall, this album gets very high marks for genuine ingeniousness, they've managed to exceed all expectations as a band, which is quite rare for a group of musicians in a very purist, underground (or used to be) segment of the heavy metal scene. By all means, this is an impressive concoction of musicianship, technicality and provides for an unbelievable listen the more one delves into it.