Review Summary: A stellar debut that captures a highly technical level of musicianship with some amazing vocals and incredible guitar work
Elision Of Animus are a band that very few will have heard of but are one that deserves recognition for the masterful work they put forward on their debut, Dementia. This is an EP that contains elements of a variety of styles of music and therefore to categorize them is not an easy task. During this 20 minute dose of goodness, the band puts forward elements of death metal, metalcore, progressive music and even a little post-rock influences to create one of the best sounding debut EP's in recent years. If there was one band that they could be compared to, it would most likely be Oblivion and their debut album Called To Rise, although with more breakdowns. They are comprised of two members : Rafael Moreira on vocals and the drum programming and Daniel Pio on guitars and bass, and the two make for a formidable duo.
The two things that stood out the most to me on Elision Of Animus' 2013 debut EP would be the vocals and the solos. The soloing on here is the usual shredding that can be expected from a death metal act, but is handled considerably better than many of their contempories. To sample a moment of one of them any solos on this release is to taste the talent of someone who deserves to be elevated to the status of a guitar God. It is not only the soloing that stands out either, as the riffs are consistently very powerful, from the lightning fast, hyper-technical guitar work near the beginning of Penumbra to the dark, atmospheric work of the closing track Memorial. This particular song is a six minute closure that never uses any heavy riffing or any other features of the majority of the rest of the album, and instead showcases some beautiful use of clean guitar work and some stellar vocals. It feels strange talking about a dear friend in this manner, but Rafael Moreira's vocals really are the focal point of this band's debut. He has some very good growls and deep growls but also some great mid-pitched screams and monster highs, and all of them are completely intelligible. Fog Of War throws the listener in at the deep end and delivers a blow straight to the chest of any nay-sayer of this band's ability. The vocals on this song are something to marvel at, jumping with ease from the low screams to the higher ones. It should also be noted that Rafael's clean singing on the closing song is very powerful and works wonders, carrying a lot of emotion and adding to the atmosphere that the guitar work to that particular song creates.
This release is a technical affair that will often leave the listener's jaw somewhere near their feet in amazement, and even the breakdowns here do not feel out of place at all. Elision Of Animus' Dementia EP is also one that pools numerous sounds to make for an incredible musical plateau. From the brutality of bands such as Cannibal Corpse and Suffocation to the progressive nature of a group like Opeth to the solemn acoustic artists out there, this is a varied release that has it all. My one complaint is that at only 5 songs long, this release really feels too short and will have the listener gasping for more. Unlike many EP's, where they are fine at 20 minutes and do not really live a bad taste in the mouth when you realize how short they are, Elision of Animus really do this purely because of how amazing those 20 minutes are. This is an album that captures sheer magnificence in the best way imaginable. The guitar solos are chaotic and fantastic, the lead work to Umbra that backs up Rafael Moreira's demonic screaming is something to wonder at, the drum machine does not sound half as bad as bands such as Perverse Rapture's do, and the production is crisp to top it all off. What more could we ask for?