|Emancer - Invisible
23 February 2004
02. On Borrowed Time
03. Smashed Mirror World
04. A Comedy Of Hunger
05. Man Denied
06. Mass Destruction
Wow, I've just read the review on metalstorm for the previous album of Emancer, namely The Human Experiment, and I'm wondering now if they have progressed so much within these two years or if my friend Undercraft ate too many mushrooms when he wrote it. I'll give him the benefit of doubt and say their progress is stunning... musicwise, because as far as the artwork is concerned, well it's still ugly, they need to make an effort about that.
Emancer really surprised me though, I didn't expect this catchy opening riff on 'Emancipation', nor the alternance of typical black screams and theatrical clean vocals. There are many sides to their music. On the one hand, this is furious black metal, with angry blasts, lightspeed riffs and a good dose of hatred, while on the other hand, clean vocals, electronic sounds and samples, acoustic breaks or some thrashy riffs (you can find all that in the fourth song 'A Comedy Of Hunger') bring a good part of originality and complexity to Invisible. If I wanted to be really precise, I'd say Emancer plays atmospheric symphonic thrashy progressive black metal. A kind of mix between Borknagar, Emperor, sometimes Eternal Tears Of Sorrow (for the Sega-like keyboard sound, and some songs that sound like the Finnish band period Chaotic Beauty), and even some hints of Celtic Frost.
This labellization is complicated, just like the music. Obviously, a good half dozen listenings are needed to understand the substance of this album. There's no simple structure verse-chorus-verse, most songs are above 7 minutes, and they all are twisted in every direction. Of course that gives an impression of mess first, but when you start disentangling the intricacies of Invisible, you realize that Mithrin did a damn good work. The production is good enough not to break the alchemy, actually the only reproach would be the use of a drumbox instead of a human drummer, but for once it sounds good, you really have to know it to notice it.
Although I am not really fond of black metal, I really enjoy Invisible. You can actually sense that this album has a strong personnality. Black metal fans and complex and technical music lovers, you should give it a try.
Highlights: Emancipation, A Comedy Of Hunger, Mass Destruction