Inquisition hit a low with their latest album after the stellar songwriting of Ominous Doctrines of The Perpetual Mystical Macrocosm. The widespread acclaim that album gained has unfortunately spurred the band on to introduce far more accessible, rock-like structures into their music, resulting in an album that knows just how far to push the envelope in favour of mainstream appeal without entirely alienating its core audience. Toxic blasting still forms the bedrock of Obscure Verses For The Multiverse albeit shakier than observed previously but there is more standard 4/4 heavy metal on display here than ever before, not something one desires from one of the mainstays of underground American black metal for the last two decades.
Inquisition‘s sound has never been one for massive improvisation. Its uniqueness arises for the most part from the liberal use of ponderous bends and good harmonic awareness. These parts are not missed on Obscure Verses For The Multiverse but have nowhere near the pseudo-ritualistic poignancy of their best work. What really disappoints, however, is the listless mid-paced filler and Behemoth-like death metal lite-cum-alternative rock tendencies that have crept into the music. At no point do Inquisition seem inclined to go for the jugular for the stretch; the listener can stay assured that every rampaging part will lapse into a meandering, raise-your-cigarette-lighter arena rock section for the paying clientele. As meaningless and same-sounding as the former may be, the second is far more cynically galling. Selling out seems like a churlish accusation to hurl at underground music but Inquisition are now raising their sights to what the wider world has to offer. Buyer beware.