Moods do swing. Analysing the mood settings in ENID’s compositions is a demanding task. In fact, the bands fourth album dubbed “Gradwanderer” makes reviewing a hard job. Oh well I’ll give it a shot, it’s my job right?
The music does a lot to you. I’m amazed by the musical knowledge of these German pioneers of Independent Metal (yep, that’s what the style description says). Abilities are unlimited. Imagine OPETH’s awe inspiring song writing talents put together with a wide range of genres both Metal and non Metal.
ENID are bound to their skills and use them in every song. “Chimera” starts the show in splendour with its wintry atmospheres and sentimental melodies, a very good song although not the most complex material they can come up with. On “An Ode To The Forlorn” the band starts to test you; this song has many different moods, it’s a full ENID shakedown, the full monty of these guys, I’m at loss for words here, really.
Vocals are sung in German and English. The vocals of Martin Wiese never tend to have a distinctive character except for the obvious Trickster G. (previously known as Garm of ULVER or Fiery B. Maelstrom of BORKNAGAR) influence. The band uses clean vocals and clean vocals only but toy with different harmonies and lots of variation. I really like the vocal work in “The Silent Stage”; more of a singer/songwriter type of song it has a very innocent theme, the vocals really share the feelings of the piano, one of my faves definitely.
The last influence I expected to hear from ENID were America’s BOSTON. That famous keyboard arrangement from the 70’s classic “Hold The Line” resounds throughout the songs, which is a lot more Rock oriented. The peak of the album is the 15-minute epic folk ballad “Der Seelensteine”. This has got to be one of the best tracks outside the Metal genre that I’ve heard in a long time. There’s no point for me to describe the beauty of this song, you just have to hear it for yourself.
This might sound like an over-the-top-difficult-to-get-into-forest-progressive-avant-garde CD; well, it is sort of but never fear though, there’s still Metal for you to hear. The title cut crosses over to Black Metal blast beats and fast melodic guitars counteracting the epic interludes, quite an interesting track.
I could write two or three pages more but “Gradwanderer” is one of those albums that must be heard to be believed, simply a fresh output of art that deserves to be heard. Closing words: Fantastic and interesting CD. (Online April 30, 2004)