Abandon Of The Self via Toulouse progressives Eryn Non Dae is a Metal album from an underground movement that a lot of the more “mainstream” and or popular Metal addicts either aren’t aware of or simply don’t liken enough to the token well-known names of the genre. It’s an album a part of a scene not for the feint-hearted or for those who are more inclined to an album of “normal” duration.
Straddling the the soaring melodies of Post-Metal, the aggression of modern heavy music and the elongated complexities of Progressive Rock and Metal, the by no means short ‘Astral’ very much has you pinned in place for the rest of the record. ‘Stellar’ much like it’s predecessor begins slow, teasing and ominous. The vocal rage of ‘Astral’ subsides for vocals that are moody, brooding and angry in tone yet subdued in delivery and in subject a socio-political rant worth sticking around for. Tool fans should subscribe here.
Foreboding drums and a heavily lowered bass distortion is both stark and subtly layered before subdued screams finally fight their way to the front for a more comfortable Progressive Metal sound that is brutal but not grandiosely so, focussing more on subtle complexity rather than heavy for heavies sake. Eryn Non Dae have a skill at arms when applying melody and by the time of ‘Stellar’ becoming something else entirely at the tracks mid-point onwards to it’s end, place just enough to contrast and increasing but again controlled heaviness.
This is an album of seven tracks where the shortest clocks in at 4:31 and it’s longest sitting at 10:18, so it is needless to say that a track-by-track review on every detail would take an age. That’s not to say the record should deter listeners though, as despite it’s majoritively abrasive Prog-Metal sound it’s duration is not as obvious as you’d expect. The irate tone of the regular Spoken Word vocals allow the riffs to shine and the complex time signatures to really present themselves before giving way to the eventual heaviness. See – ‘Omni’.
The band’s shortest track – ‘Eclipse’, carries all the hallmarks of their progressive medium but instead of edging towards the release of unbridled rage, chooses to follow it’s path almost wholly with but a few ever-so slight injections of melody, jagged groove and cleaner vocal refrains. Eryn Non Dae are a heavy band there is no doubt, but when they forsake cumbersome slow-moving progression for cathartic release they show themselves condensed yet also fully.
Abandon Of The Self doesn’t ever utterly shock the listener with a stark change in direction but does “keep you on your toes” within the sound shamelessly outlined in ‘Astral’. This doesn’t mean Eryn Non Dae are in any way limited to what they can throw at you but rather that they have a bag of tricks easily moulded. In fact, perhaps the best referenced material on this record for that very statement would be the mammoth ‘Halo’, where the band’s Post-Metal penchant is purveyed in perhaps it’s purest form.
Towards the end of Abandon Of The Self, Eryn Non Dae really do become the Post-Apocalyptic soundtrack they aim to be. By this point you are completely at home with the flashes of soaring but distorted melodies, frantic time signatures and contrast between a three-way vocal personalities, that the stylistic changes seen in ‘Fragment’ might not become so apparent first time around.
But that just means you should listen again and maybe even again but before you do, I will leave you to your sonic navigation of the ‘Abyss’.