Oct 092013

(Andy Synn reviews the latest album by Belgian progressive death metal band In-Quest.)

Make no mistake, The Odyssey of Eternity is a fantastic album, punishingly heavy and furiously aggressive, yet at the same time coldly, hypnotically compelling – pulsing with razor-sharp death metal hooks and spell-binding sci-fi ambience.

Though the core of In-Quest’s sound has long been an amalgamation of monstrous post-Meshuggah mecha-groove and wrenching Darkane-style cyber-thrash – along with more than a hint of Decapitated-esque devastation– this time around the Belgian post-death metallers have further augmented their murderous robotic rampage with haunting layers of synthetic soundscapes, artificial atmospheres, and cyberspace dynamics, in a flawless fusion of beauty and brutality.

The clever, intricately precise way in which the album is constructed – each track flowing into the next with intelligent design– is testament to the care and creativity involved in its creation. Each track has something which makes it stand apart from the others, its own identity and method of attack, yet the fluid transitions between them are utterly seamless. This mesmerising, interwoven connectivity of sound and vision is incredibly rare, and ensures that the album is best experienced as one cohesive whole.

photo by Emilie Declerck

Though there’s no escaping the debt that the juddering, fractal force of “Enter Eternity of Lethargy” owes to Nothing-era Meshuggah, ultimately this is merely a foundation stone on which the band build their own defiantly distinctive musical identity – a state-of-the-art, lethally precise form of post-human death metal, all bombastic, hyper-modernised aggression and algorithmically calculated chaos. Relentlessly crushing, yet gloriously atmospheric.

“Taedium Vitae” comes out of the bio-organic bludgeoning of “Enter Eternity of Lethargy” with a series of jerky, rapid-fire riffs and soaring lead parts that mix heavy artillery and haunting beauty, topped off with a blast of raging catharsis courtesy of Miqe Löfberg’s furious vocals. It culminates in a gravity-inducing rhythmic slow-down, which transitions – through the eerie void of “Elliptical Orbits In Disbelief” – into the armour-plated grooves and creeping metamorphosis of “Reiterated Cycles of Celestial Spheres”.

Utterly demolishing, it’s densely packed with choppy, chugging riffs and lithe, harmonic lead parts which endlessly shift and transform into new shapes and new evolutions. It builds to a soaring melodic climax, before dropping into a crippling passage of crawling, dominating riffs and unsettling ambience. This paves the way for the cybernetic thrash attack of “Non-Pseudo Existence”, whose rapacious speed and intensity is enhanced by a series of writhing, complex drum patterns, coiled, angular riffs, and an atmosphere of cold, clinical malevolence.

The drumming on this album is absolutely phenomenal. Complex and calculating yet effortlessly dynamic and devastating, it drives songs like “Infinite Sleep For The Hollow” with perfectly placed salvos of precise, pneumatic power. The track ends with one of those quintessential, definitively In-Quest riffs – irresistible and inimitable – rippling with cyborg might and mercilessly efficient hooks, which  melds into the stomping, staccato rhythms and shape-shifting, liquid-metal riffs of “The Algorhythmic Alignments”, whose earth-shaking blasts of sheer sonic force are punctuated with moments of sublime dreamlike beauty and soaring, skyscraping lead guitar work.

The song climaxes with an explosion of manic death metal extremity, pistoning and pulverising with warped and dissonant death metal violence, laying the groundwork for the jarring, shuddering hyper-metal riffage of “Yearn To Return (Liquidation Fails)” – a terrifying barrage of ballistic drums and gargantuan, grooving guitars.

Mercilessly heavy at times, moody and hypnotic at others, its contorted, captivating riffs and exhilarating eruptions of spiralling melody draw the listener into the eye of the storm, trapping them forever in the centre of a dizzying maelstrom of ferocious bio-mechanical might, which then loops back in upon itself, devouring itself once more and beginning again at the end.


Make no mistake, The Odyssey of Eternity is a fantastic album, punishingly heavy and furiously aggressive, yet at the same time coldly, hypnotically compelling – pulsing with razor-sharp death metal hooks and spell-binding sci-fi ambience.


The Odyssey of Eternity can be streamed, downloaded, and ordered in various formats on Bandcamp. Listen below.




  1. Christ, didn’t know they were STILL going!!!! Saw them in 2003 with Sven on vox, was MASSIVE!!!

    Looks like another hole in the bank account is forming 🙂

    • Oh man… you are screwed…

      The albums they released after replacing Sven with Miqe are fucking FANTASTIC. So you’ve got The Comatose Quandaries, Made Out Of Negative Matter (reviewed here at NCS by moi) and The Odyssey of Eternity to get through.

      (Kudos for knowing them from the Sven-years btw)

      • Only live once :p have you heard the first two Andy?

        • Yeah with NG on vox, those were a bit different in sound but utterly devastating individual as well. I think only the drummer is still the same from those days.

        • NG went on to join Caducity, that’s another Belgian band you need to check out. Especially their first two albums are some of the most epic and weird death metal I’ve heard (at the time at least)

        • I have Operation: Citadel on cd, but not Extrusion!

  2. This sounds like a beefed up meshuggah. But much more death-ier and melodic

  3. i confess this is my first time hearing In-Quest and i’m kicking myself for it, they’re awesome

  4. Digging it, thanks!!.. have put my order in! reminds me a bit of recent mnemic, particularly in the depth and colour of the sound…

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