Metal today is littered with sub-genres. And with many bands sticking to the formula of their respective style, the need to categorise has never been greater. Enter INCITE, the American metallers have steadily building a name since exploding onto the scene in 2009. With their fourth record, Oppression, it feels like it’s make or break time for INCITE. Does Oppression keep the band on a forward charge or does it stumble out of the blocks?
Never Surrender‘s sustained introduction is a good start to the record; an eerie introduction builds anticipation before exploding into life through intricate riffs and thunderous vocal deliveries from Richie Cavalera. It’s full throttle and in your face from the get-go, setting an aggressive and immense mood. From there, the pace of the record doesn’t let up, with galloping riffs and pummelling drums. Lost Reality‘s sustained riffs encourage the heads to bang as the pace consistently builds before unfolding into a monstrous chorus whereas Stagnant features an immense solo from Kevin McAllister. It’s moments like this where INCITE truly shine; with enough creative flair to truly surprise the listener.
Consistency is key for a record of this nature and for the most part, INCITE have produced an admirable effort with Oppression. The consistent riffs and bouncing chorus from the efforts of guitarists Dru Rome and Kevin McAllister on the title track truly gives the it the addictive and memorable feel. It’s consistency like this that is present across the record and each member of the band more than provide on their respective duties. Derek Lopez‘s drumming and the bass work of Christopher Elsten is formidable, keeping the rhythm nice and balanced and Richie Cavalera does a fantastic job at the helm of the band, providing some truly impressive growls. Forced Into Life is one such example where he really shines with some truly menacing growls on the track’s chorus that send shivers down the spine. The start of the show here however is within the guitarplay. The dual efforts of the band’s two guitarists make for some truly blistering moments; riffs are intoxicating, solos are performed to pin-point accuracy and above all, it’s memorable. In a sea of mundane in the current metal scene, INCITE have produced some truly great riffs, riffs that make the record instantly stand out amongst the competition.
In truth, there isn’t a lot wrong with Oppression. It does exactly what it says on the tin; blistering fast and hard-hitting heavy metal. By album number four, INCITE have found their sound and this record is the best example of that sound. It’s fast paced, slick and uplifting. Whilst it doesn’t break new ground, this is a band performing at the top of their game and Oppression is a record that can sit well in any metal fan’s music library.
Oppression is out now via MinusHEAD
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