Yndi Halda
Enjoy Eternal Bliss EP


4.5
superb

Review

by USER (4 Reviews)
December 20th, 2005 | 21 replies


Release Date: 2005 | Tracklist


Sometimes you hear something for the first time, and you aren't all that impressed. Sometimes you hear something for the first time, and something about it draws you back into it again later. Sometimes, you hear something for the first time and are completely blown away. yndi halda's freshman release, enjoy eternal bliss falls in that last category.


yndi halda is:

Jack Lambert - guitar
Daniel Lovegrove - bass
Daniel Neal - violin
Oliver Newton - drums
James Vella - guitar

sometimes: keely plays clarinet, yndi sing ragged yelps, daniel neal plays more violin, james plays glockenspiel, oliver plays tamborine.


I guess you could call yndi halda's first EP, enjoy eternal bliss, their 'self titled debut', but that would just serve to confuse those that don't know that 'yndi halda' means 'enjoy eternal bliss' in Icelandic. However, no matter what country you're from nothing will get lost in translation while listening to their first release. The professional quality not only applies to the recording, but to the songcrafting as well - an elegant combination of guitars and other stringed instruments reminiscent of Godspeed You! Black Emperor, as well as clarinets and the occasional full-bodied chorus of voices really carry across yndi halda's message on this record.

"dash and blast" starts off with a very slow build, again harkening to GY!BE and similar others, but yndi halda take their music in a different direction than the Canadian titans - instead of a very long build built, followed by an amazing climax and a long fall (wash, rinse, repeat), they keep a more consistent musical "high", similar to Sigur Ros and some Explosions in the Sky (on The Earth Is Not A Cold Dead Place). Through and through, once it builds past a (relatively) slow start, this one is a great listen, and in a grand way mixes in lots of both sadness and hope, and puts a genuine smile on my face when I listen to it. The orchestration of the piece shows yndi halda have a certain maturity in their writing, something they will continue to prove throughout enjoy eternal bliss.

"we flood empty lakes", the shortest track at a mere 11:42, cuts to the chase with much more immediacy than the track before. We are instantly presented the theme, which becomes a mantra for the other instruments to revolve around and spin off in their own directions. This is fairly normal for Post-Rock, though they get to where they're going in a much less drawn-out fashion, and the original mantra gets "flooded", if you will, until it's barely heard under the thick layers of sound. Everything suddenly backs off, and new themes develop, slower this time, but with urgency. This strategy is done three times, promptly to start (as described), less so the second time, and over several minutes to climax the last time. The best part is - it works. Instead of starting slow and building to the most intense points at the end, yndi halda have inverted the scheme - the make the cycle progessively slower, and yet grows steadily more intense and desperate with each climax.

"illuminate my heart, my darling!" is the pinnacle of this band's work, making use of all their tricks in their bag. I was so moved when I finally heard this track for the first time that the music overwhelemed me and overtook me, such that I was literally almost unable to move. This track contains some of the purest emotional outcries and some of the most impacting sadness on the whole EP, which is truly saying something. Remeber that time you listened to that Sigur Ros song and it reminded you of your saddest memory ever? This track is just like that song, only it reaches the peak of expresses that same, crushing sadness in the first four minutes. Every instrument is used to amazing effect, particularly the clarinets, whose sweet tone cut through just enough, especially when set against violin lines, and the whole thing is just dripping with emotion. Positively oozing. The rhythm section provides a steady drive, and the when the guitars cut in with incredible power and force, it's the rawest and singularly most beautiful moment on the EP, and, in fact, anything I've listened to in a long time. The middle of this track has a long, quiet section in the middle, centered around a lone guitar, which suits the track perfectly - it allows you some time to recover from the first half before setting up the final close. These guys prove with this track in particular that they know exactly what they are doing and how to achieve maximum effect, and are being done a great injustice with their "amateur" status.

In short, enjoy eternal bliss is an intersting use of irony on the band's part, because this album's highlights mostly slam the listener with a very beautiful, often overwhelming, sadness. This so-called EP takes up a full three quarters of an hour, longer than most Beatles LPs, and is very attention demanding. Trying to write a review while listening to the EP again was rather difficult - this music needs to be focused on by the listener to be truly enjoyed, as is the case with much of Post-Rock. yndi halda as a whole are a hybrid of sounds from the greats that came before them and inevitably inspired them, though they take what is great about these artists and leave out a lot of the fluff, at times imrpoving on the formulas. And for a first release, that is damn good work. They borrow heavily from Godspeed You! Black Emperor, and rival them in track length at times, but are much more to the point. They capture the warmth of Sigur Ros, but are less glacial. They evoke Explosions in the Sky, but with more instrumental diversity. They sound like a Post-Rock band that seriously deliver the goods.

Pros:
- Magnificently created music; very mature songwriting.
- yndi halda beg, borrow, and steal from the titans of Post-Rock, while defining their own sound.
- The consistently long songs do not drag, and intensity is maintained.
- Some of the most impacting and profound music to come from an amateur band, let alone any band, in years.
Cons:
- The songs are very long and attention demanding; may deter more casual listeners.
- I have yet to find an yndi halda band t-shirt. What's up with that.
- I also have an very short list of complaints.

FINAL SCORE: 4.5/5

If you are a fan of Post-Rock, these are the guys to watch. Even if Post-Rock is not you're thing, you should give yndi halda a try, at least if you appreciate beautiful music.


user ratings (84)
Chart.
4.1
excellent
other reviews of this album
Del Mar (5)
Predictable, in the most perfect way possible....

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Comments:Add a Comment 
Zebra
Moderator
December 20th 2005


2647 Comments


I'm really getting into post-rock and I haven't heard this. I will definately check it out.

Good, detailed review. You convinced to give this a listen.

masada
December 20th 2005


2733 Comments


Oh look, another post-rock band.

Like the genre isn't tired already.

Neurotoxin
February 21st 2006


90 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"Oh look, another post-rock band.

Like the genre isn't tired already."

This comment wasn't necessary, at all. However, you either pulled that line off of another website or were given recognition on the band's MySpace. They post some of their bad criticisms and that was one of them, word for word.

As for the album itself, it really is superb. Like you outlined in the review, the last bit of the album is phenomenal. I can't wait for a full release.

I must also agree that this album blew me away as well. I kept it on repeat for at least four hours after the initial play.This Message Edited On 02.21.06

Iai
Emeritus
February 21st 2006


3553 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Hahaha. It really is on their MySpace.

I should go around slagging bands more.

Kage
February 23rd 2006


1172 Comments


I don't understand how Post Rock is a tired genre.

I need to listen to this, I love Post Rock more than life itself.

Good review.

Spectrum
February 28th 2006


347 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

If you order the CD from the band ASAP, they're still making the last of the hand-made EPs. The packaging is unique to each recipient. Mine had a French book with notes in it, as well as cardboard with pictures glued on and words about the band/songs. Also, an yndi halda pin. Very cool.

Thanks for the comments.

Kingofdudes
March 1st 2006


294 Comments


I was gonna look into ordering this, but they arent taking anymore orders for now :-/

Spectrum
March 5th 2006


347 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Yeah, they stopped pressing the CDs for now. When they resume, it'll be in more uniform packaging, like a normal CD release. It might even be on a label (?)

Atomic Rain
April 8th 2006


1 Comments


Yes, they've signed to BSM records.

I like the fact that mine was made with their own bare hands.

llama1600
July 16th 2006


8 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

If this is just an EP, i cream my pants at the mere thought of a full release.

amazing, gorgeous, epic, beautiful.


Great review too

telemore
July 29th 2006


13 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I just got this yesterday and I love it. Absolutely phenomenal.

pixiesfanyo
August 20th 2006


1223 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah, this is awesome.

I'll review it better soon.

Myrkskog
November 3rd 2006


1 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Easily one of the best albums I've ever heard. Shame the new track for the proper release can't match up to the original 3.

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
December 8th 2007


15737 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Fuckin incredible work right here. Really takes the elements that set Godspeed You! apart from every other Post Rock band that tends to drag it all out. These guys able to make their tracks interesting and epic and beautiful all at once.

Digging: Ricky Eat Acid - Three Love Songs

tombits
October 27th 2008


3470 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Dash And Blast is really amazing. The other two tracks don't live up to that.

mynameischan
Staff Reviewer
October 27th 2008


17920 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

um we flood empty lakes is obvi the best

grahamg0re
October 11th 2009


155 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

good review.

I haven't heard the full length let, but I think this may be my favorite post-rock album

cirq
October 11th 2009


9264 Comments


get the full length

DeafMetal
November 28th 2010


8588 Comments


Does this rule or doesn't it.

Digging: Hawkwind - Space Ritual

Pheromone
November 10th 2013


3511 Comments


yo I'm confused, is this not just the LP minus one song?

Digging: Doves - Lost Souls



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