Inner Surge – Matrika (CD)

Inner Surge – Matrika / 7 Tracks / / / Reviewed 17 April 2004

Starting out their CD with “Driven”, sounding like a mix of Tool and Damage Plan, Inner Surge really are a heavy rock band that knows what they are doing. While the recording on “Matrika” may not be the best, the musical talent of the band shows through, even if their originality is not as complete as some other acts. Moving to “Backlash”, the Tool sound that was present in “Driven” is meshed together with some faster delivery, giving the track a staggered sound that is completely innovative, canceling out the musical apathy of the first track. Starting out “The Fall” with a brooding bass line that is similar to Load-era Metallica, Inner Surge builds up the tension of the track, practically letting the track stop until they go into a System Of A Down-style chorus and solid drums. While I understand the need for a greater cohesive sound, the same distortion on the guitar and bass are on each of the seven tracks of “Matrika”, makes the disk far more open for individuals to construe it as repetitive.

“Beneficial Fever” is a slightly different iteration of the general sound that the band has been cooking up since the beginning of the disc. This time, a lighter sound is the effort of Inner Surge’s work, with a more Eastern flair, and the chorus’s guitar riff is one of the most compelling of those I’ve heard in a long while. That aforementioned guitar riff opens up into a guitar solo that combines the best of eighties metal with that type of metal that is currently popular. Moving in the realm of Blind Guardian vocals with “Impact” , Inner Surge immediately goes back into the general new-wave metal sound that are extremely common on rock radio nowadays.

Inner Surge is a band that can write a compelling sound, but really rely on their musical inspirations more than any band should, making “Marika” sound like a B-side compilation of the top five most popular metal bands that are currently out. The band really knows how to play their instruments, but their current sound really makes it hard to discern that fact. Perhaps as they continue together (they’ve been around since 2001), Inner Surge will begin to flesh out their own sound and leave these influences by the wayside. I know I’ll be waiting for that moment, as they could seriously go somewhere with their talent.

Rating: 6.3/10

Top Track: Backlash

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