Emptiness - Vide review



Reviewer:
N/A

36 users:
6.67
Band: Emptiness
Album: Vide
Release date: February 2021


01. Un Corps À L'abandon
02. Vide, Incomplet
03. Le Mal Est Chez Lui
04. Le Sévère
05. Ce Beau Visage Qui Brûle
06. Détruis‐Moi À L'amour
07. Plus Jamais
08. L'erreur
09. On N'en Finit Pas
10. L'ailleurs


Emptiness left their death metal husk. What's left is Vide.

The trajectory of Emptiness has been a very interesting one. Formed in 1998, they spent the first decade of the 2000s as a fairly standard but nonetheless worthwhile blackened death metal band. Their two main members also spent considerable time as or are still members of Enthroned. Something changed with 2012's Error, an album that focused its death metal energies more into an atmospheric lumbering industrial direction, and that was even more obvious in the massive 2014's Nothing But The Whole, which truly feels like death metal deconstructed into an atmospheric landscape, but still recognizable as death metal. 2017's Not For Music completely reduced the death metal, bringing a lot more post-punk / darkwave sounds, while still keeping a foot into metal territories. That foot has been lifted.

I don't know if this is a one-off experiment, but judging by the band's trajectory, regardless of whether they bring back their sound into more metal territories or not, no future Emptiness album will sound too much like any previous Emptiness album, including Vide. But even so, I'm listening to Vide and I'm quite baffled. I know coming in with the "this used to be a metal band" mentality is like shooting yourself in the foot in terms of enjoyment, and I'm generally a big fan of metal bands moving away from metal, whether it be Opeth, Ulver or Anathema. So if I'm listening to a non-metal album by a metal band, I actually expect to come out enjoying it. That didn't really happen here. Even if I try to pretend this is an album by some other band.

I don't think Vide is terrible, or even bad. But to draw a short comparison to another instance of a metal band doing a non-metal album, Opeth's Damnation is seen as the golden standard of this types of albums. I love every song on Damnation. But I don't like listening to Damnation. It's my case of "the whole is worse than the sum of its parts". That kind of happens here, any song on Vide sounds pretty much in vein with a lot of the atmospheric coldwave dabbings of the previous two albums, and each of these could've found their way on those albums, and I would've loved them in that context. I can't say that Vide sounds just like an album of extended intros/interludes/outros, but it sounds too much like one.

However a lot of Vide feels like it has more in common with ambient music than with previous Emptiness albums. The heavily processed vocals, the dreamy atmospheres, the tape manipulation, oozes of either dream pop or something like The Caretaker or William Basinski. The band clearly has some skill in crafting ambiance, melding it with the traces of the old Emptiness sound, and with a healthy dose of 80s post-punk/dream pop/darkwave, but still not enough to make it interesting for more than two consecutive songs. I expect I will be listening to the songs here quite a lot, whether alternating with other Emptiness songs or with similar stuff, but I doubt that I will give the entire album another full listen for a long while.

That said, my curiosity of how the next Emptiness album will sound like will indefinitely persist. But please don't put a fetus on your cover art again.



 



Written on 19.02.2021 by My opinion is objective, sorry if you don't agree, but you're wrong.


Comments

Comments: 9   Visited by: 79 users
19.02.2021 - 22:34
nikarg
Mod
Quote:
I'm generally a big fan of metal bands moving away from metal, whether it be Opeth, Ulver or Anathema. So if I'm listening to a non-metal album by a metal band, I actually expect to come out enjoying it. That didn't really happen here.

I am completely the opposite. Most bands make a turn for the worse according to my taste when they abandon metal (not because they abandon metal though). But Vide is the Emptiness album I enjoy the most, it is a great companion for winter nights with good whiskey.

Quote:
But please don't put a fetus on your cover art again.

I agree. Worst cover art of the year contender.
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20.02.2021 - 05:57
Lord Slothrop
Quote:
I agree. Worst cover art of the year contender.


I dunno... that Steven Wilson cover is pretty terrible.
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20.02.2021 - 10:20
nikarg
Mod
Written by Lord Slothrop on 20.02.2021 at 05:57

I dunno... that Steven Wilson cover is pretty terrible.

Indeed. Also a strong contender.
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20.02.2021 - 17:19
UnknownCheese
This album is a massive pass for me. Didn't like the preview tracks whatsoever.
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20.02.2021 - 17:20
Batlord666
I was really excited for this album. I loved "Nothing But The Whole", and I thought "Not For Music" was just beyond brilliant. I like the singles for this one. But listening to the whole album left me bored, it felt very one-note. I really love the style they're going for, but as you said, it's a little tough to get through. Sadly disappointed in this one.
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20.02.2021 - 19:35
metalwolf
I can but agree with the review and the comments. Sometimes it's simply too much.
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Cthulhu for President! Why settle for the lesser evil?
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20.02.2021 - 20:00
Karlabos
Weirdo of MS
This review sums up my experience with dark atmospheric music in general. Be it ambient, noise, neofolk or whatever.


That's why I like at least some drums in my music.
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Rose is red, violet is blue. Flag is win, Baba is you.
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22.02.2021 - 21:37
DeliciousDishes
annoying
I would be lying if I didn't feel this album was definitely a bit one-note or repetitive. HOWEVER, this may actually be a good thing. This is a "drunk out of your mind alone at home" kind of album to me, you just drift in and out of it. Really enjoyed it on that level and while I'm not sure how often I'll revisit it, I think it definitely left an impact. This is supposed to feel formless.
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You are the hammer, I am the nail
building a house in the fire on the hill
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23.02.2021 - 01:13
BitterCOld
waltrsobchakheit
Album good, fetus bad. review good. Still well behind "Not For Music" in my earholes, but maybe will continue to grow... though to be fair, that was a high bar.

Written by DeliciousDishes on 22.02.2021 at 21:37

I would be lying if I didn't feel this album was definitely a bit one-note or repetitive. HOWEVER, this may actually be a good thing. This is a "drunk out of your mind alone at home" kind of album to me, you just drift in and out of it. Really enjoyed it on that level and while I'm not sure how often I'll revisit it, I think it definitely left an impact. This is supposed to feel formless.


As with your signature, nail, meet hammer. I love a lot of the super chill releases from former extreme metal acts for that reason. Put on while buzzing, about an hour before I want to go to bed and put on some open world video game where I can wander at will, low stress environs just to chill.
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get the fuck off my lawn.

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