Eneferens, The Bleakness of Our Constant
Eneferens, The Bleakness of Our Constant review
By John Fisher, July 2, 2019
The first track, “Leave,” all instrumental, nicely sets the table for The Bleakness of Our Constant. I really enjoy when a metal album begins with a pleasant instrumental. The liner notes read “to those who have experienced trying times, hardship, loss, or feel the struggle in this wandering existence, this record is for you.” This opening track by Eneferens reminds me a bit of Astronoid’s opener to Air, with the track “Incandescent.” Both take about a minute with an opening solo and theme to the song, before the full band is revealed to take pleasure in showing just a little bit of teeth. Both openers effectively set the stage for track 2, and that short pause in between tracks 1 and 2 probably would make for a powerful silence and explosive start to a live show for both bands. Here’s the crazy thing though: Eneferens is only one guy, named Jori Apedaile.
Without question, this is the most talented one-man band out there. I challenge someone to change my mind. The vinyl liner notes read, “Jori Apedaile – all instruments, vocals. Engineered, mixed, and mastered by Jori Apedaile at the Black Lodge Studios. Photography and design also by Jori Apedaile. All tracks copyright Jori Apedaile, 2018.” Insane. One man literally did everything on the album. And some of these songs are all time.
“This Onward Reach” has such a sick first transition in the section “when the sky sank so low, I could feel it then, in the twilight mask…” On first listen, it was too instantly catchy that I went back to the beginning to see what happened. How did it suck me in so quickly? It blasts through another black-metal blasty round and another sick transition with lyrics to match, with “love leaves the body…the light I no longer see illuminates the world around me. I am lost.” It does not end on a positive lyrical note. The tempo changes drastically, and the dark lyrics do not mirror the music. In this case, opposites attract. About 2 minutes in, a heavy-ish section (probably a blast to play drums on live) takes us to some clean-singing, proggy-but-still-metal areas to explore for a while. Damn, Apedaile has a great scream and seemingly fully capable clean singing voice? And…. the classical guitar, flawless and unique little snare fills on drums, bass, piano, lead guitar, probably a flute or something in there …the songwriting too? WTF. In this album’s case, soaring, inspirational songs are paired with dark, depressing lyrics, and it mixes well.
“Amethyst” and “Awake” secure The Bleakness of Our Constant as an album of the year contender. In fact, I cheated this month, and found this album reviewed as Angry Metal Guy’s #2 album of the year last year. That’s a pretty big statement coming from AMG, as they are the best in the business at metal album reviews. The AMG crew casts a wide net in the metalsphere in terms of how diverse an array of metal sub-genres and bands they review. Their material is always well written and even if I can’t get down with a band, AMG has a way of finding the gems out there across the sub-genres. They found one here, and I agree it belonged up there on last year’s album of the year list, and it’ll make for a good contender for me this year.
For me, momma moved out, the Raptors won an NBA title (damn that was a sick NBA season and playoffs), I am under quota at work right now but it’s about to change and I feel like July is going to be the turn-around month. These companies are taking longer than ever to decide and I have a grittier mix of prospects recently, and I hope this is not the new normal. Ster and Banner came up for the US Open at Pebble Beach for the final two rounds. It was an all-time trip, and Pebble is going to be the new bar to try and beat. I think Ster called it on the last day, and rated the weekend a 9.7. Solid score there. I made it up to Tahoe for a summer trip, which was a game-changer for me. Now I’ve got all seasons to visit my family in Tahoe, especially because I can go mountain biking or snowboarding by myself for a few hours on Saturday mornings. I have realized that I get a nice recharge when I am by myself, and I can’t get enough solo time right now. Seriously, snowboarding and mountain biking, alone, is a treat. Out in nature, getting exercise, the adrenaline rush, music, add the incredible views. THC helps for weightlifting in addition to the Tahoe sports. It’s been great working out in the backyard this past month. I have been supplementing with creatine and lifting 4 times a week. My strength numbers are through the roof, but my cardio is weak. I’m going to need to get out on the mountain bike more often. 4th of July coming up, road-trippin to Socal, it’s been too long, coming home for a few days.