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Infidel

I, Oathbreaker

(Caroline; US: 20 Mar 2007; UK: Available as import)

Greece’s finest doom metal legions, Infidel crawl out of the Acropolis to bring us an album full of gall. Their sinister diminished chords are slowed and stewed to a Black Sabbath-esque crawl, while growler Yiannis Poussios puts his deep, fluent baritone up to as much misery-making as possible. The band’s songwriting rallies against ignorance and the hopelessness of mankind’s plight—“Joy seems like a dream I never had… That vanished with the winds of misery… Men turned to piles of toxic waste… With their souls wandering in agony” is the chorus to “Mourning Demon”, and that’s only the first track. Still, while the riffs the band writes are pretty unoriginal, “The Golden Hips of Dawn” celebrates the very brief psychedelia-metal coming of Infidel, complete with scratchy funk techniques from their guitar unit; Gregorian chanting doubtless recorded straight out of the Greek Orthodox Church introduces “Infidel Theme”, and a bass solo brings final (thoroughly depressing) act “Circle of Shame” to adjournment, as good as any bass solo can be asked to be. If the world really does end tomorrow, I, Oathbreaker is a fairly consistent release, and has a looming, full-bloodied sound that exudes confidence—and don’t say they didn’t warn you!

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