As well as the usual hyperbole and useful information, the press release that comes with "Dentro" features a thought provoking mini-rant about decribing bands in terms of their peers. Apparently, Skunk D.F. are here to show us that it is still possible to be different, because they are more interesting than Deftones and more complex than Tool. Fortunately, the album lives up to that hype.
So, describe the music without referring to anything already available... Well, it's standard metal fare, made more interesting by the fact that Skunk D.F. are Spanish, sing in Spanish, and have their roots in traditional Spanish music. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't, but it's always better to have a band that tries to be different. The result is that "Dentro" never sounds quite like anything else. There are hints of familiar styles: the grungy vocals in "El Encanto De La Imperfeccion" and "En Silencio" for example, but this is offset by the sheer freshness of the sound. "Por Dentro" and "2-3-6-8-10" are both saved from mediocrity by traditional rhythms. While the majority of songs aren't going to set the world on fire, the use of traditional instruments gives Dentro" a coherence which other albums lack.
If one were to make comparisons, the obvious one would be Sepultura, more for the simple fact that both bands use traditional music to complement metal, than any similarity between their respective sounds. Like Sepultura, Skunk D.F. stand alone in the metal world - because there is no album that sounds like "Dentro", it is difficult to imagine "Dentro" ever sounding dated, in the same way that Sepultura's "Roots" still sounds fresh. "Dentro" is neither a product of its time, nor a reminder of things past.
And ultimately, that is "Dentro"'s greatest achievement. Its refusal to bow too far to current trends means that, when today's bands sound stale (i.e. today), Skunk D.F. are different enough to sound interesting. And since it's highly unlikely that a hundred copycat bands are going to spring out of the woodwork overnight, it seems Skunk D.F. have what it takes to survive.
8Nick Lancaster.'s Score