Under The Influence #12: Inhuman Nature on “Humanity Is The Devil” by Integrity!
By the time the bands third full length album “Humanity Is The Devil” was released in 1996, Integrity had been on the scene eight years. Founded by frontman Dwid Hellion and with an ever revolving door of musicians that have included a few famous names. For example, former rhythm guitarist Frank Novinec has also appeared in Ringworm, Hatebreed and Terror during his career, while Full Of Hell drummer Dave Bland handled the kit on their 2018 material and former lead guitarist Aaron Melnick and his bassist brother Lenny Melnick have also played in In Cold Blood. The 1996 album flipped not only the script on their Underground Hardcore sound but the entire table as they created an experiment of an album with amazing results. The middle section of the album sees Metal and Punk infused into the sound with the aforementioned brothers creating a hybrid beast that brings Metallica, Motorhead and Black Sabbath influences into the mix. But then you have the weird “Drowning in Envy” with its warped synths and toilet flush sounds, while “Trapped Under Silence” questions how much of what you see and hear is real or just a projection into your mind from another being. The Matrix anyone?
Inhuman Nature vocalist Chris Barling comments: “Everything about this album is f***ing brilliant, from the Pushead cover art with the massive weird chicken warrior and all the mysterious Process Church imagery, its opens with Vocal Test straight into “Hollow” (one of the best openings to a record ever), and the lyrics are so dark and nightmarish. I imagine if the Cenobites from Hellraiser started a band, this is the shit that Pinhead would sing about! I first got into this record around 2006/2007 when me and my buddy Sam started kicking around ideas to start a band and he put me onto this. One of the first things Hang The Bastard ever did was cover “Hollow”, the second track from the record and arguably their most famous. Thinking back to that time, I’d say that trying to match up, even a little bit, to Dwid Hellions vocal style helped me develop my vocal own style in a big way. Lyrically, I honestly couldn’t tell you what they the songs are about. Maybe that’s the point. It all just adds to the mysteriousness of the band. I feel like I’ve taken a lot of inspiration lyrically from the writing style, being very descriptive, using metaphors and leaving a lot of things up for interpretation, and that’s something that I’ve tried to bring with me through various different projects and up to including the Inhuman Nature full length, although it’s that’s got more of a storytelling, and themed vibe. One of the things that Integrity have always done incredibly well is offer record art that matches up with the songs to create a solid piece of art for you to look over while you are jamming the record. Every little detail feels thought out and has a purpose. It took me a while to get the hang of this but again, I think it’s being a fan of this record and the art that has helped me with releases that I’ve been involved with. If you like heavy and metallic hardcore or just don’t know where to start with Integrity, I recommend this! “The lamb and the goat have finally fused as one” from Abraxas Annihilation.”
Inhuman Nature’s self titled album is out now and available everywhere that you can think of, as well as some places that you can’t! Go check it out for your Crossover Thrash hit!