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Infinitas - Civitas Interitus Award winner

Civitas Interitus
by Jason “Monotonija” McCraw at 01 February 2018, 5:35 PM

With an intro that sounds like it was taken straight out of the opening score of a classic Lucio Fulci horror film, "Civitas Interitus" by progressive Thrash Metal outfit INFINITAS bursts into existence. But INFINITAS proves to be so much more than the Melodic Thrash label that some descriptive accounts have given them; this band is truly something special. Hailing from Switzerland, the collective has seen many line-up changes since its inception around 2011. Come 2017, the concept album "Civitas Interitus" claimed its place in the annals of Metal history, and a new kind of awesome was born.

As the intro winds down, track two, "Alastor", takes centre stage. With its opening blast beat-backed riffing and demonic growl by singer Andrea Boll, the first impression given is that this is going to be a Black Metal record. Yet within seconds, the beat slows, birthing a completely unexpected classic Thrash aesthetic. After a few bars of this, the yelling switches to a much more melodic singing style, complete with backing vocals sung in perfect harmony. The music changes its tone yet again as well, becoming something of a Folk Metal anthem accompanied by strings, synths, and various different percussion elements. It is now clear that INFINITAS has done something refreshingly new and quite adventurous, as far as the entire genre of Heavy Metal is concerned.

The third track on this themed record, "Samael", blasts forth with powerful, Folk-driven fiddling and dancing guitars that never relent in their power and otherworldly mysticism. Every instrument, both authentic and synthetic, is masterfully played, and the song itself takes plenty of playful turns throughout its entirety, giving life to the heart that drives INFINITAS as they amaze and perplex by creating something the likes of which we've never heard before. One fantastic intro, two songs deep, and it is utterly apparent that "Civitas Interitus" is an album that will make it damn near impossible for the listener to press the "stop" button during playback.

Track four, "Labartu", is equally (if not even a little more) impressive. Any semblance of label or genre has pretty much flown out of the window at this point, and what we are left with is an exploration into many different aspects of music production and execution that have been intricately woven together into the finest of tapestries. Every song on the record gives one the impression of having discovered some long lost treasure from an unknown civilization. The mixing is nothing short of phenomenal, and the end result is an unquestionably enriching experience designed of sound and emotion.

As this stellar album reaches its finale, which boasts a lengthy closing track entitled "A New Hope", it leaves us all with a new hope of our own; a hope that INFINITAS continues to do what they do, and expands on this wonderful foundation they've built with the album "Civitas Interitus". I find myself melting, drifting and floating softly down the most serene stream as an acoustic guitar joins gentle hand percussion over the sound of rushing water. Haunting voices carry me away, until all that is left is the essence of life itself. Water caresses stone, and the only music that remains is that of nature incarnate. This is the beginning of something impossibly both primal and new; this is, hopefully, the new face of Metal music.

Songwriting: 10
Originality: 10
Memorability: 9
Production: 10

5 Star Rating

1. The Die Is Cast
2. Alastor
3. Samael
4. Labartu
5. Aku Aku
6. Skylla
7. Rudra
8. Morrigan
9. Amon
10. A New Hope
Pauli Betschart - Bass/Background Vocals
Selv Martone - Guitars/Synths
Piri Betschart - Drums/Vocals/Clarinet/Percussion
Andrea Boll - Vocals/Percussion
Laura Kalchofner - E-Recorder/Background Vocals
Record Label: Independent


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Edited 15 December 2018

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