Release DetailsLABEL Cruz Del Sur Music
RELEASED ON 4/1/2004
Opus Dementiae - Per Et In Aenigmate
posted on 9/2004 By:
This might possibly be the least-definable album I’ve had to review yet. Italy’s Ensoph gallivant all over the musical map, with an avant-garde sound that is equal parts electronica, black metal, industrial, doom, and miscellaneous. The vocals are the first indication that Ensoph will not be pigeonholed into a specific genre. More often than not, a whispered, raspy voice is employed, but this is complimented by at least three other vocal stylings, including deep-voiced cleans, a Marilyn Manson-like creepy voice, and sporadic female singing. Musically, there is a wealth of unnatural instrumentation, mostly techno beats and electronic keys. Needless to say, Ensoph will not be playing an Unplugged anytime soon.
Behind the electronic wall, there is a standard band performing. When I actually notice the guitarwork, he’s usually playing either doomy melodies (sometimes with a Middle Eastern feel), or tremolo-picked blackened riffs. While this would suggest a very dark sound, that isn’t the case. A few songs are weighty industrial-ish works, but for the most part, the electronic elements dominate the mood, and they generally are more upbeat. I don’t have any production criticisms, for what it is, the mix fits well.
Oddly enough, my favorite track is the heavily-techno remix of “Sophia’s Fall”, an earlier song on the album. My techno knowledge is trifling, so attempting to describe the song would be futile. The original version of the song is harder, with a slightly-epic atmosphere. “Faith Defeat” is the closest thing to a typical metal song, with plenty of punchy riffs and snarling screams. “White Lamb Seducer” is equally strong, with a great riff in the chorus, and dark moods created. “Sun of the Liar” is also of some note, due to a finely-sung chorus, and masterful synthesizer lines.
I’m not really sure who I could recommend this album to. It defies classification, and because of that, I can’t come up with a set group of fans for it. All I know is that about half of the tracks are strangely compelling and find themselves played repeatedly. Maybe you’ll like this, maybe not, but I guarantee that you don’t have too much like this in your collection.
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