Napalm Death - Inside the Torn Apart
Earache Records
Death Metal/Grind
14 songs (45'11")
Release year: 1997
Napalm Death, Earache Records
Reviewed by Adam
Archive review
Napalm Death were in the midst of their late 90’s slump when they released 1997’s Inside the Torn Apart. Following almost immediately on the heels of what I consider to be their worst album (Diatribes), it unfortunately has much in common with its predecessor. The band were still toying with their overall sound, and nearing the end of their days with a record label they were becoming increasingly unhappy with in Earache. Though I compared this album with Diatribes, it still contains a fair share of memorable tracks.

Breed to Breathe is quite a stunning opener for a few reasons. I would describe the sound as Napalm Death gone Industrial. Danny Herrera’s drums have a very mechanical feel and lend the most to the industrial effect, pushing the superb riffing of Mitch Harris and Jesse Pintado into new territory. Barney Greenway even sprinkles in some deep spoken vocals for the chorus. The overall result is quite different from your standard Napalm Death fare, but it sounds surprisingly excellent. Unfortunately, this momentum is squandered quickly. The next few tracks pass by unnoticeably, and it isn’t until the title track 4 songs later that something really begs to be listened to. That’s not to say the other tracks are poor per se, but they are completely unmemorable and interchangeable. The title track is an interestingly brutal death metal affair, and Barney screams the namesake lyrics in a manner that is not his usual rabid wolverine delivery. This is followed by If Symptoms Persist, which is the finest point on the album in my opinion. It embodies everything I like about Napalm Death. The pace is blistering, the riffing is razor sharp, and Barney’s vocals are particularly vicious. The curiously titled Prelude continues in this style, though the riffs don’t resonate as much. The maddening inconsistency is back after this two song respite, as the closing six tracks don’t really stand out in any way. There are some moments of grinding goodness, as in Lowpoint, but mostly these tracks are just a mishmash of groove, death metal, and a hint of grind that don't do much to stand out. Again, they're decent tracks in their own right, but not really worth mentioning.

Outside of the few high points mentioned, Inside the Torn Apart is an album that just doesn’t do much to pull Napalm Death out of the hole they dug for themselves on Diatribes. This album can safely be skipped by most as it is far from essential listening. That said, the best tracks are quite fantastic and are worth checking out for fans of Napalm Death.

Note: This review refers to the digipack version. The original version does not contain the final two tracks, Time Will Come and Bled Dry.
Killing Songs :
Breed to Breathe, If Symptoms Persist, Prelude
Adam quoted 71 / 100
Goat quoted 78 / 100
Other albums by Napalm Death that we have reviewed:
Napalm Death - Throes of Joy in the Jaws of Defeatism reviewed by Goat and quoted 85 / 100
Napalm Death - Apex Predator - Easy Meat reviewed by Goat and quoted 83 / 100
Napalm Death - Utilitarian reviewed by Charles and quoted 95 / 100
Napalm Death - Diatribes reviewed by Goat and quoted 58 / 100
Napalm Death - Words from the Exit Wound reviewed by Adam and quoted 74 / 100
To see all 18 reviews click here
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