Review: “Self Titled” by Inner Circles

Dublin Ireland is the home of John O’Kelly, the one man multi instrumentalist behind Alternative Metal project Inner Circles. Adorned with cover artwork from visual artist Shane Reilly, who also created a music video for single “Possession” from the 1920’s film “Genuine: A Tale Of A Vampire” and with Mastering from Fergal Davis (Muse, Codes), this first offering is an insight into a dark world…

…Somber touches of meloncholy give “Possession” the feel of a song conjured by the mind of Smashing Pumpkins mastermind Billy Corgan with the Gothic overtones of Type O Negative but it’s the transitions between the slowly burning atmospheric sections and the raging fires of the driven moments which impress the most. A great deal of craft has gone into the writing to keep the darkness engaging and maintain the atmosphere between each song to make them a single cohesive body of work. Keeping the vocals bigger in the mix “The Last Time” has the angst of “Self Esteem” by The Offspring as it tells the tale of someone down on their luck that keeps going back to an old flame for one last time. We’ve all done it and it resonates with chills in a raw emotive display that somehow manages to it together for a sing-a-long chorus. Nuanced melodies bring “Voices” together with elongated instrumental passages that border on Progressive Rock with some intricate moments underpinning the bleak vocal performance, while¬†Tool esq vibe soaks the whole thing in Kerosene and threatens to set it alight. A haunting opening to “Doorway” gives it the intrigue of a ghost story and when it builds up to the more intense moments, Kelly doesn’t go with any unclean vocals, instead switching to more nasal snarl. A play on light and shade, it works well as it meanders onto some folk inspired moments before an icy wind leads into “Prophecy“. A final flourish that introduces some Melodic Death Metal moments into the work of bands like The Cure, the end result is a somber and sobering light through the darkness as the gloom lifts like the mist on a Winter’s day, leaving behind a sense of peace and tranquility [7/10]

Track listing

  1. Possession
  2. The Last Time
  3. Voices
  4. Doorway
  5. Prophecy

Self Titled” by Inner Circles is out now and available over at bandcamp

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