Entheos (CAN)
Ototeman


4.5
superb

Review

by AlphaBetaFoxface USER (16 Reviews)
February 9th, 2016 | 14 replies


Release Date: 01/07/2015 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Dejection never tasted so good.

A djentier, proggier friend of mine once suggested I try my ears to Entheos; an American, progressive deathcore band with a love for the groove (pretty solid stuff!). Thus, I punched the band's name into Bandcamp and was pleasantly surprised to find that a lesser known band with the same name had published a considerably better record that very day. New York may have proven to be metal's city of madness in recent years, but the French (Canadian or otherwise) are the undisputed kings of melancholic obscurity. And no band better proved this in 2015 than Quebec's own Entheos.

"Ototeman" is a hard record to pin down as almost every song sounds influenced by different artists. However, Entheos somehow managed to hold their own and push a consistent tone for the entire duration of the album. Fusion of later Deathspell Omega and Ulcerate, paired with the somewhat jazzy lucidity of Fen would be an indicator of the album's overall tone. A good deal of the riffing brings to mind the early years of black metal, but the bass playing and lead guitars often create dissonance and tones that comply more with current acts. The bass work on this album is nothing short of brilliant; it is a rarity to see bass being used to induce such discordance while still holding down the low end near-flawlessly. Paired with some stunning electric and acoustic guitar work, "Ototeman" becomes a cacophony of despair without trying excessively to be avante-gard.

An interesting aspect of "Ototeman" that is often neglected in the more extreme sides of black metal is it's keen sense of restraint. Songs ebb and flow in a fashion extremely mature for a debut album. No excessive blast-beats, no atonal riffing for the sake of being atonal. And while the guitars are the driving force for "Ototeman" (and do uses atonality), the drumming is without a doubt the star of the show. Fills and complex interplay are present, but where percussion truly shines is in the contrast between dynamics. Groovy, smooth rhythms line acoustic and clean guitar play, before building to massive crescendos without fail. The vocals may not match up against the fantastic instrumental performances, but they do provide some pretty effective nightmare fuel in the form of mid-to-high shrieking. The brilliance of musicianship throughout the album is pushed to further heights by the wonderful production that is crisp and dynamic, while still retaining gritty aspects of black metal we know and love.

It's not often a black metal record grips me for as long as this has. Every listen reveals new intricacies in the instrumental play, and every listen is just as (if not more) depressing as the last. Entheos weren't trying to make the most kvlt, extreme, obscvre record of 2015; they simply wanted to serve a slice of depression that was palatable. This record is stunning from beginning to end, with not a second wasted. And even while "Ototeman" dishes out some intensely visceral work, breathing time is always provided in form of some beautiful clean and acoustic guitar work. It's cold, it's harsh, it's gloomy, and even so, dejection never tasted so good.



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user ratings (13)
Chart.
4
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
AlphaBetaFoxface
February 8th 2016


89 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Haven't written anything in ages so decided i'd pull up this gem from last year! Hopefully you guys enjoy the album, and thanks for reading my review!

Sunnyvale
February 8th 2016


1147 Comments


Solid review. I downloaded this last year and listened to it once, need to give it another spin. I remember it's good stuff.

AlphaBetaFoxface
February 9th 2016


89 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

@Sunnyvale thanks dude! I didn't give it much attention on my first listen and very nearly shelved it. Happy listening yo

Killerhit
February 9th 2016


6013 Comments


"A djentier, proggier friend of mine"

He sounds like a fucking douche
Where can I meet him

AlphaBetaFoxface
February 9th 2016


89 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

@Killerhit He'd be that guy at Guitar Center. You know... THAT guy.



*sweeps in Spanish*

Archelirion
February 9th 2016


5720 Comments


This sounds like it could be ridiculously good, definitely gonna check :]

bnelso55
February 9th 2016


1337 Comments


Good review! I have never heard of these guys, but this sounds promising. I'll give it a listen today.

AlphaBetaFoxface
February 9th 2016


89 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

@Archelirion It didn't hit home until a few listens to me, but hopefully you will enjoy it just as much as I do!



@bnelso55 Thanks dude! Yeah, they are a pretty small group so anything you can do to help them out would likely be massively appreciated. They deserve a lot of credit; "Ototeman" is a brilliant album!

ChoccyPhilly
February 10th 2016


11871 Comments


Fantastic review, man and you've definitely sold this to me as well

Dmax28
February 10th 2016


592 Comments


It's always a pleasure to see your reviews. Thanks for doing the lesser known stuff too. I've found some great albums from you. This album is ok, but I guess I gotta let it sink in.

AlphaBetaFoxface
February 10th 2016


89 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

@ChoccyPhilly Thank you! I hope you are able to find some enjoyment in it!



@Dmax28 Likewise, and it's always a pleasure to see your comments! Loved your last two reviews man, i've found some similarly great stuff from you! And "Ototeman" won't be for everyone, and I had to run it a few times before it started to click. But once it did, I was pretty dang happy that I was patient with it!

arnoldperson
February 10th 2016


13 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

So glad this band is getting a little exposure. Saw them at the album launch in Montreal in an extremely obscure venue. Good review btw, pos'd

AlphaBetaFoxface
February 11th 2016


89 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

@arnoldperson They at least deserve this much! And thank you for the kind words!

Evok
August 3rd 2018


7728 Comments


This sounds like everything I want. Will czech.

Digging: S.P.Y. - Dubplate Style



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