When you deal with a Metal subgenre, it requires a short and clear explanation that […]
February 25, 2015
Ecnephias - Ecnephias album cover

When you deal with a Metal subgenre, it requires a short and clear explanation that everyone understands and can agree upon. However the so-called Dark Metal subgenre is somewhat ambiguous about its origin and meaning. Big Daddy personally remembers a 1998 interview of THY SERPENT as the first band to use such label to name what they were doing. But as time passed by, more and more bands started using the name, and the conception of the subgenre became expanded as many bands started using Gothic Rock influences to create a more elaborate and melodic style of music, with a more elegant approach, effectively forming what some would call Gothic Metal. But Big Daddy here has some objections to use of such a label since there's no listenable link between Gothic Rock bands as THE SYSTERS OF MERCY and THE MISSION with bands as MOONSPELL or PARADISE LOST. But of course, you are free to have your own convictions. So, in terms of the second definition, we are able to name as Dark Metal the works of bands like Italian quintet ECNEPHIAS, and their new album, "Ecnephias", which is a very good one indeed.

Just as a reference, you could compare them to a rawer and bit more extreme band than TRISTANIA in their best moments. But they got a lot of their own personality and some features that belongs to them, like some of the guitar leads are sometimes reminiscent of those from the NWOBHM. Mauro Andreolli signed the mastering, and the sound quality is very good, putting all musical instruments in their due places. And what's really kind of astonishing is their heavy, melodic and melancholic music that breathes some life in such an eroded style - and they really did a fine work creating long and elegant songs, without losing their heavy and extreme grasp. "Here Begins the Chaos" and "Satiriasi" are two instrumental tracks to introduce and end the album. And their best moments are "The Firewalker", the darkened and elegant "Born to Kill and Suffer" (see the contrast between harsh and clean voices with attention here), the perfect "Chimera" (great guitar work here, with excellent keyboards interventions), and "Wind of Doom". But don't be lazy and hear the entire album, for it's very good.

Get your homework done, dear nephews and nieces, and hear "Ecnephias" with an open heart and mind.

9 / 10

Almost Perfect

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"Ecnephias" Track-listing:

1. Here Begins the Chaos
2. The Firewalker
3. A Field of Flowers
4. Born to Kill and Suffer
5. Chimera
6. The Criminal
7. Tonight
8. Lord of the Stars
9. Wind of Doom
10. Nyctophilia
11. Nia Nia Nia
12. Vipra Negra
13. Satiriasi

Ecnephias Lineup:

Mancan - Vocals, guitars, programming
Nikko - Guitars
Sicarius Inferni - Keyboards, piano
Miguel José Mastrizzi - Bass
Demil - Drums

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