EPHEL DUATH — On Death and Cosmos (review)

EPHEL DUATH — On Death and Cosmos album cover EP · 2012 · Avant-garde Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
4/5 ·
Time Signature
Stardust rain...

Genre: Ephel Duath metal

"On Death and Cosmos" gives us a peek at what Ephel Duath anno 2012 sounds like. Joined by Steve DiGiorgo, Karyn Crisis and Marco Minnemann, Ephel Duath main man Davide Tiso is in etremely good company, and that shows in the three highly unique tracks on the EP.

Drawing on a post-metal experimentalism combined with the dynamics of jazz and the heaviness of sludge metal, the EP is definitely interesting, and Karyn Crisis' harsh vocals add a black metal feel as well.

The opening track "Black Prism" is based on a stomping rhythm which is contrasted with a certain weirdness that, for some reason reminds me of both King Diamond and "Aqualung"-era Jethro Tull. "Raqia" starts out with clean guitars and a heavy drumbeat and actually quite pleasant and mellow to listen to, but when the distorted guitars kick in, the tracks turns in a more doomy direction, and is perhaps best described as something in between sludge-doom and jazz-inspired avant-rock, characterized by a dynamic that challenges our sense of cohesion in music (as a matter of fact, the track is actually very coherent and focused, but it is just that it features many elements that are unusual to the average listener of mainstream music). The third track "Stardust Rain" is rich in dynamic drumming and, du to the dissonant guitar figures, has a general almost volatile or brittle texture to it which constantly seems on the verge of collapsing or breaking apart, held together by DiGiorgio's bass and Crisis' raw vocals.

Needless to say, the musicianship is top notch - it has to be with that line-up. the drumming is dynamic and often has a sort of jazzy feel to it, while DiGiorgio's bass provides a good bottom and is also allowed to do some of the acrobatics he is known for, while Karyn Crisis' vocals provide a certain rawness and extreme metal fell. And everything is masterfully blended together under the watchful eye of Davide Tiso whose guitars challenge several conventions of rock music.

Personally, I find this EP a very interesting listen, but also one that challenges the listener; "On Death and Cosmoms" should be appreciated for the piece of art that it is.
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