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EDGE OF SANITY - Infernal cover
3.19 | 16 ratings | 2 reviews
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Album · 1997


1. Hell Is Where the Heart Is (5:26)
2. Helter Skelter (2:27)
3. 15:36 (4:54)
4. The Bleakness of It All (3:31)
5. Damned (By the Damned) (5:31)
6. Forever Together Forever (4:27)
7. Losing Myself (3:37)
8. Hollow (4:26)
9. Inferno (3:28)
10. Burn the Sun (6:30)
11. The Last Song (5:32)

Total Time: 49:54


- Dan Swanö / Vocals, Guitar, Bass, Piano
- Andreas Axelsson / Guitar, Vocals
- Sami Nerberg / Guitar
- Anders Lindberg / Bass
- Benny Larsson / Drums

Lineup notes:

Lineup for tracks 1, 3, 6, 7, and 11:
Dan Swano - Guitar, Bass & Vocals (E-bow & Piano for track 11)
Benny Larsson - Drums

Line up for tracks 5, 8, 9 & 10:
Andreas Axelsson - Guitar
Benny Larsson - Drums
Anders Lindberg - Bass
Dan Swano - Vocals

Lineup for track 2 & 4 :
Andreas Axelsson - Guitar & Vocals
Benny Larsson - Drums
Anders Lindberg - Bass
(Peter Tagtgren - Lead Guitar on track 4)

Anders Mareby - Cello ("The Last Song")

Guest Lyricists for a portion of the tracks were: Jonas Larsson (track 1), Anders Jakobson (track 3), Michael Akerfeldt (track 6) & Jonas Renske (track 7).

About this release

Released on Black Mark Productions, February 5th, 1997

Thanks to J-Man, The Angry Scotsman, adg211288, umur for the updates


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Specialists/collaborators reviews

"Infernal" is the 6th full-length studio album by Swedish death metal act Edge of Sanity. The album was released through Black Mark Production in February 1997. Following up an almost universally praised album like "Crimson (1996)" must have been a daunting task for the band. Add to that the huge expectations from the fans, and the fact that the band was falling apart because of musical differences around the time of recording "Infernal" and you have a major part of the explanation why "Infernal" is not only vastly inferior to it´s predecessor, but also an incohesive and overall disappointing release judged on it´s own merits.

The album simply sounds like it´s recorded by two different acts and when you look at who´s playing what on the album, it soon becomes apparent that that´s exactly the case. Tracks 1, 3, 6, 7, and 11 on the album are recorded by Dan Swanö (Guitar, Bass and Vocals) and drummmer Benny Larsson without participation from the rest of the band. Tracks 2 and 4 feature almost all other band members except Dan Swanö, while track 5, 8, 9 and 10 feature all members.

It´s not that such an approach can´t work and it does work in some cases, but here Edge of Sanity obviously struggle to make ends meet. The material on the album, which were recorded solely by Dan Swanö and Benny Larsson, are clearly the standout tracks on "Infernal", while the remaining tracks more or less fit the filler definition. Tracks like "Hell Is Where the Heart Is", "15:36", and "Forever Together Forever" could quality wise easily have fit on any of the preceding releases by the band, but overall there are not enough memorable tracks featured on the album. Other standout tracks include "Damned (By the Damned)" and the melodic clean sung "Losing Myself".

"Infernal" is still a reasonably good quality release though (the musicianship is strong and the sound production is powerful and detailed), and even the tracks which are clearly fillers ("Helter Skelter", "The Bleakness of It All", and "Inferno" are examples of that), do feature some redeeming qualities. It doesn´t change the fact that "Infernal" is a bit of a disappointment, when you compare it to the last couple of releases by the band. The incoherence of the material makes it a fragmented listen, which never really feels like a satisfying whole. It´s the sound of a once great act coming to an end. A 3.5 star (70%) rating is still deserved though.
The Angry Scotsman
After the release of "Crimson" a rift formed in the band, largely between Dan Swano and Andreas Axelsson, over the new progressive direction of the band. The rift is clear on this album, as half the songs are written by Swano, with the other half by under Axelsson leadership and the whole band doesn't even play together on every song.

Edge of Sanity appeared to have been a band in conflict and the result was this album sounding, well, conflicted.

"Infernal" is quite inconsistent and I have to be honest, the Swano songs are far superior to the others. They tend to be more diverse, progressive, better written and I think he is a better vocalist than Axelsson. The other tracks tend to be more directly death metal and frankly, less inspired and a bit boring.

Standout tracks are "Hell Is Where the Heart Is", "15:36" and "The Last Song" which seems to be, quite clearly, the last song Swano was to be part of for the band. Its somber piano intro, lyrics about struggling to write the very song, simply trying to complete it, (asking why we are even listening to his "empty words") and its slow, dirge like riffing, simple yet powerful melodic guitar soloing and churning drums gives it a powerful sadness, a real painful beauty of a song. Chilling and moving.

While those are Swano songs, and I find his other tracks superior as well, they are by no means perfect. "Losing Myself" is a fine track, but a bit lackluster and honestly forgettable. On the flip side, "Burn the Sun" is a very interesting and progressive song.

"Infernal" is an album written by a band splitting apart, and it resulted in an inconsistent and disjointed effort. It is by no means a bad album, just largely lackluster, but with some solid, interesting, songs and nothing that is egregiously bad. A decent, albeit sad, outing from EoS.

Three Stars

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