Release DetailsLABEL Olympic
RELEASED ON 9/7/2004
Onward To Mecca
posted on 10/2004 By:
Their heavily groove oriented sound still in hand, NYDM legends Internal Bleeding attempt to once again crush the listeners with their most recent 39 minute effort, Onward To Mecca. Not much has really changed here - they're still doing what they do best. Groovy head-bobbing parts that tie together more frantic and fast-paced material, most often compared to Dying Fetus and even Suffocation. Pausing for the occasional bass solo, Internal Bleeding plods along like a war elephant. That is, until the thrashy melodies of "Infidel" make a brief appearance. And then it's right back to elephant stomping. Their high point is, without question, their rhythmic ability. It's what they've built a name upon. And while it's wholly enjoyable, the entire album begins to seem a little formulaic and drags on. Sure, they manage to grab your attention again for brief moments using a series of artificial harmonics and ear-catching solos, but they continually bring you back down to that tired and lumbering level. I'd like to hear more tracks like "Arm Our Youth", which has almost a stoner rock/death metal hybrid sound, and the ending of "This Day I Fight", which is a fantastic instrumental. For the most part though, it's just a continual rocking back and forth of groovy breakdowns to faster and heavier substance. Heaven for some, boring for others.
I'm not much of a fan of the production for Onward To Mecca, which was handled by Terrance Hobbs of Suffocation. Parts that could sound really phenomenal almost seem a little drowned out by the mechanical sounding drums. It's proficient drumwork, certainly, but it's overpowering at times. On "Hate Fuel", there's a nice phasing effect moving from one speaker to another that's somewhat innovative. So while the production is an improvement from their previous efforts, the songwriting isn't. Internal Bleeding have merely stayed the same. While this may please a lot of people, I'm personally disappointed that the material isn't harder hitting. It doesn't leave a lasting impression on me, no matter what sort of feelings of nostalgia it produces. The years have changed, but the band stays the same.
I was really looking forward to this album, so I'm aware I'm being harsh on the Internal Bleeding guys. They haven't made a bad album, necessarily; they just haven't made an outstanding one. They've continued along the path they left off at. If you're a big fan of their older work, you're not going to be let down by Onward To Mecca. But I wouldn't recommend it to first time listeners of the band. It's great mosh music made by incredible musicians, but it's not for everyone.
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