'Another Scheme of the Wicked' is the follow up album to 2013s self-titled debut from oppressive, industrial black Metal duo Invertia from New England and consisting of guitarist/vocalist Dave Coppola and drummer/programmer Tim Winson.
The intention of this release is to mirror display some of the darkest paradoxes and terrifying segments of American society and to ridicule the hypocrisy of cult-religious fervour.
'Another Scheme Of The Wicked' consists of five tracks and five remixes from five different musical backgrounds, including Ohm Resistance veteran Justin K Broadrick (Godflesh, Jesu), End.user (The Blood Of Heroes) and Submerged (Method Of Defiance, The Blood Of Heroes).
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My initial impression is very positive, this intense and challenging listen makes a welcome change from the traditional approaches to extreme Metal with its highly experimental, off the wall approach and I really enjoyed the gut wrenchingly vitriolic vocals which were by far my favourite aspect of the album. They sat well alongside a heavy and well implemented use of sound-bites, machinegun riffs and blasting drum work.
However it's very much an album of two halves and I did much prefer the first half, consisting of the five original tracks, opening with 'The Sidewinding' which, although I thought it was a good track, it was just a little too long. Initially compellingly, intense and holding my attention with a vice like grip for the first four minutes but the repetition lost me in the final minute.
'Cross-Eyed Christ' is a great track and probably my favourite; it's compact, intense and played at an insane pace and with a dark sinister leaning while 'Void Of Community' is powerful, dark and oppressively intense, another good track, as is 'Hourglass Without Sand' with a powerfully oppressive and doom rich drop-away midway. 'They're Everywhere' is packed with terror filled intensity.
Concerning the second half, I have mixed feelings about remixes and these have been altered so far beyond the original they feel unrelated and although I loved the experimental aspect of the originals some of the remixes area little too far removed from the original genre for me.
Out of the five my favourite is 'The Sidewinding '(Justin K Broadrick Remix). I liked his past work with 'Cult Of Luna'. This version is even longer and much less intense than the original 'The Sidewinding' with a dirtier edge. Its more atmospheric, melancholic and surreal but not quite as dark and desolate.
The next three, 'Cross-Eyed Christ' (End.user Remix), 'Void Of Community' (TranZi3nt Remix) and 'Hourglass Without Sand' (Submerged Remix) were strongly industrial with a definite drum and bass edge which didn't keep my attention.
The final track, 'They're Everywhere' (R3TRD Remix), was much better and although the intensity has been watered down the vitriolic vocals remained and the horror instilling fanatical preacher soundbites brought to the forefront on this track to great effect.
The superb geometric and architecturally surreal artwork is by Shvlfce, a New York based artist and it certainly suits the surreal nature of the music contained within. If you fancy something a little boundary pushing and surreal you may well find this an interesting listen.