No matter who you ask in the industry or where you look, there’s no denying that 2018 has been an exceptionally odd year for rock music. It’s like the volume has been turned down and all of what would be the most talked about groups in the United States are more interested in going soft then they are turning up the intensity. But thankfully we can look to the north and find none other than Canadian rock kings In/Vertigo keeping the flame alive and thriving in their single “Bad Enemy,” which is out this fall along with their excellently crafted debut EP.
In/Vertigo don’t show any interest in slowing down for anyone, and I’m not just talking about the tempo at which they play their music. “Bad Enemy” is hardly an exercise in D-beat insanity, but there’s a sense of urgency that pushes the band and listeners forward from the commencement of the track on. When you’re riding the In/Vertigo train, there’s no time to look back or see the passing landmarks; we’re compelled to face the brick wall of sound staring us in the face and smash through it like a bull through soft linen. If the experience is too daunting, maybe you don’t belong listening to rock n’ roll.
There’s a metallic edge to “Bad Enemy,” but there’s also a lot of intricate details that can be found when giving the song a close inspection. Fans with a keen ear for music will notice that even in their most mammoth riffing there’s countless moving parts churning the sound of the band along, from the calculated bassline to the fierce vocals interwoven amongst the drums. In/Vertigo gives us a lot to think about, but at the same time their music doesn’t demand an intellectual mind to understand its inner workings.
“Bad Enemy” actually has a lot of swing in its step in the vein of more classically styled blues rock but sans any of the patience that Delta players mastered so brilliantly. It’s not that it’s a bad thing, it’s just that In/Vertigo constantly remind us that time is of the essence and if we stop to get hypnotized by the opulence of their feedback we could end up getting lost in their rich sound forever. You could describe it as a punk rock inspired set of ideals, but I actually don’t know if there’s ever been a band with quite the same collective perspective this one has.
This band has risen through the ranks to the very top of my “must see live” list after listening to “Bad Enemy” on repeat for the last few days. There’s no question that In/Vertigo were designed to crush any venue that they play, but this song is almost guaranteed to up their ticket sales by double once it makes its way onto college and specialty radio later this year. There’s big things ahead for this band, and if you consider yourself a hardcore rock fan, you’re all but certain to cross their path in the near future.