Death metal, a style that’s been existing for decades with its ups and downs, highs and lows has been struggling to stay consistent in an increasingly diverse metal spectrum.
This has led to various bands over the years injecting variety and stamina into the genre resulting with the innovation of Death Thrash to Blackened Death to Death Doom to even Power Death, from such pioneers as ‘Autopsy’, ‘Death’, ‘Asphyx’, to more contemporary acts such as ‘In Flames’, ‘Arch Enemy’, ‘Whitechapel’, and ‘Children Of Bodom’, to name a few.
Therefore the bar, so to speak is raised so high it’s almost an impossible feat, especially for an new and upcoming band to try something different and fresh within the parameters of this particular genre.
A five piece Dublin Death Metal crew who have carved out their own particular style of extreme metal, resulting in one of the most effective and uniquely diverse Death Metal records of late with their debut E.P ‘The Less You Know The More You Sleep’.
From the outset of the E.P, with the opening Track “The Walking Dead”, you know you are listening to a sound that is something wholly novel and unpredictable, as the song starts out with a powerful quick tempo riff and meanders between dynamic death metal and slow sludgy doom in such a fluid motion, while interlaced with harmonic melodies, all, in most occurrences, within the the confines of the same verse which makes for, quite frankly a jaw dropping listening experience.
This quality and authenticity shines throughout the entire Ep not only from a musical perspective but also from the sheer vivacity of sole vocalist Brian Harrington. I say sole vocalist simply because he is the only vocalist, in not only Jenova, but present on the EP, even though your senses will tell you different.
His style, range and presence is in itself a force onto its own with interchanging mid range howls, to guttural rasps, to incredulous screams, all encompassed within a verse or chorus, in accompaniment with Jenova’s offbeat metallic style, can be simply unbelievable.
The second Track “The Final Tide “, commences at a quicker pace than The Walking Dead, but just as soon you think you've found the rhythm the pace changes to a dirge like march, before accelerating again.
This track in particular showcases Brian's vocal talent even more so than its predecessor, partly due to the tracks offbeat composition, which allows for such a talented performer to experiment and dare I say on a Death Metal record, have fun with the tracks superbly fragmented structure.
Kudos to the engineer also for recognizing the vocal range and too not only have it featured as prominently as any of the instruments, but by deploying techniques such as layering all varying vocal styles on top of each other in some cases, where we can hear Brian's capabilities all at once.
One of the main strengths, and there are many, that Jenova have throughout this Ep, from the crushing opener ‘The Walking Dead’, right through to the melodic strains of the final track ‘Rains’, is to not only keep you attentive throughout the entire EP, but through their versatility, keep you guessing as well.
This varying style is sure to capture the attention of fans young and old, from all walks of life, across the extreme metal realm.
So in conclusion, this is simply a must have release and essential to any heavy music listeners collection and you’ll be hard pressed to find this kind of authenticity not only at a local underground level but on the major global circuit too.
Recommend for fans of:
At the Gates.
Jenova consists of Brian Harrington, Dylan Kennedy, Cormac Jordan, David Mooney and Marco Persechini.
Recorded by Colm Drennan at Sound Training Productions.
Mixed and Mastered by Aidan Cunningham.
EP Artwork by Dave Mooney and Martin McCormack.
Release date: August 25, 2017
Label: Independent release
Available from: Bandcamp, Spotify, Google Music, iTunes, Apple Music, Youtube