Review Summary: The unsung heroes of death metal
I first heard Insanity on their 1994 album, Death After Death, and it was a great album. It was only later that I researched and found that the songs on the album were actually recorded in the mid 80s, so I started to compare what was going on around that time. Insanity were so far ahead of the game than others. These guys absolutely rip. While everyone else is inching forward, pushing the rock of extreme metal a step at a time, Insanity are bouncing it like a basketball and dunking it. To realize something this technical was released in 1985 became more and more amazing to me.
The sad thing about Insanity is they have so far been doomed to cult status and not gotten the respect the deserve it seems among most metalheads. They suffered the loss of life of two band members along the way and had trouble getting their first record out. I love old school death metal and these guys have found their way into my heart. Insanity are true pioneers and really set a high standard for technical death metal. Death metal of this caliber didn't appear until later, and even then it doesn't sound like Insanity. Insanity have their own distinct style in their riffing that I have yet to hear duplicated. It's progressive and jazzy but it's super aggressive and will rip your head off. Some of the drumming is very close to blast beats, as well.
Chronicles of the Cursed is a two CD set that has all the songs from Death After Death except an acoustic track, remastered, plus other songs, live takes, and all of their demo material. If you enjoy death metal or thrash metal you owe it to yourself to hear these guys if you haven't already. It saddens me when Hellhammer, Possessed, Death, Morbid Angel or others are mentioned and praised endlessly for what they contributed, but Insanity are either misunderstood or underrated. Perhaps one day Insanity will be recognized for their skill and creativity and as the forefathers of technical death metal.