By AJ Phink
Inire have established themselves on the alternative and metal scenes in their native Canada with their blend of northern groove, stoner metal and hardcore energy, Cauchmar is the bands sophomore album and it follows up on their 2007 self-titled EP and their 2009 debut full length, Born The Wicked, The Fallen, The Damned. The album is produced by drummer Chris Bonavia and features thirteen hard edged tracks that will build on the band’s reputation of delivering the kind of energetic anthems that have earned them a loyal following, and led to them relentlessly touring across Canada and performing at one of Canada’s biggest outdoor festivals, Amnesia Rockfest, and headlining Fete Nationale.
This is a blend of heavy contemporary metal blended with hardcore and a touch of thrash, Cauchemar eases you in gently with opening instrumental, Avidya, which builds up the expectation before Wide Awake does exactly what a song with that title should do. The album varies between a faster hard hitting style, where the heavier influences come to the fore, and more traditional metallic compositions. Cauchemar carries on in the vein until you get into the final third of the album, when the heaviness is punctuated with a somewhat baffling orchestral segment. Burn restarts the album with a great distorted chugging riff before the album’s flow is interrupted once more by Into The Labyrinth, a folk sounding instrumental with sinister whispers, before the album builds to a rock finale with the title track and Just A Halo Away.
Cauchemar is distinctly more towards the metal side of it’s roots, but the hardcore influence has generally supressed the self indulgent urges that metal frequently harbours. The guitars, vocal harmonies and double bass drumming are all elements in Inire‘s sound that belongs almost exclusively in the worlds of rock and metal, almost, there is an undercurrent of attitude that gives Cauchemar an edge over many contemporary rock albums. Personally I’d have a preferred a slightly greater influence from the heavier elements as this underpins the albums best tracks, but aside from my personal preference for the faster noisier compositions this is a fine hybrid of rock, metal and punk, albeit one that leans much further into rock than the majority of crossover albums I encounter.
Cauchemar can be ordered here