Edenian - _Rise of the Nephilim_
(BadMoodMan Music, 2013)
by: Chaim Drishner (5 out of 10)
Some music can be beautiful to the very core -- and still fail in addressing the emotional generator within the human soul, leaving the listener numb and indifferent. That's the biggest enemy of music, right there, of any form of music: indifference, apathy, a nonchalant shrug lightly brushing off said music's very existence.

Melodic gothic doom metal is such an anomaly: how can such utterly beautiful music leave the listener emotionally empty for the most part? How? Maybe it's because this kind of music is largely too sweet for the human palate, and when one's physiology faces such an onslaught of sugar-coated melodies, the defense mechanism responds with an immediate shutdown of both the metaphysical and physical sensory systems as a means of survival against this 'sugar rush'; and then, apathy sets in. Or maybe because this form of metal sets not any considerable obstacles, meaning it is virtually devoid of challenge -- any sort of challenge -- sort of what you see is what you get; a fast burning material, easily digested, leaving no desire for a revisit.

The exceptions are few and far between, and don't even get me started on what 'real' gothic metal is for me (e.g. Abysmal Grief, Cultus Sanguine and such), but Edenian is the rule, rather than the exception to the rule, so here we go (again): good musicians, smooth songwriting and tight execution, but no real soul, dark edge or added value whatsoever.

Not very different than the band's previous effort, _Rise of the Nephilim_ is gothic metal painted by numbers, where every cliché box is checked. The backbone of the music is the familiar, pedestrian Eastern European melodic doom/death, accompanied by orchestral keyboards and a rather inadequate female singer whose performance adds nothing to the charade.

There's not enough contrast between the elements comprising this album: this is sweetness upon sweetness, covered with a layer of hot chocolate fudge, on top of which there is a batch of candy high on its sugar content. You can eat that much amount of sweet stuff before nausea appears. I'm not saying this album is totally nausea-inducing, but the lack of apparent will to break the mold, to think outside the box or to go the length and try something different for a change -- is at least disappointing, if to use an understatement.

The music kind of reminds the force-fed 'heaviness' of Inborn Suffering, and even though Edenian -- as opposed to the former -- heavily use the aforementioned female singer, her inability to transcend the songs to a different plane of existence makes this an inconsequential fact: both bands sound more or less the same; same artificial doom and gloom, same plastic moods and sentiments, even the same songwriting methodology that is ultimately a cut-and-paste procedure from beginning to end. The question that needs to be answered is: who plagiarized whom?

If you're not a fan of half-baked, benign, melodic doom/death metal, avoid this album. Then again, if you are in a dire need for something with which to pass your empty, boring moments, try this album -- I've heard many, many albums far worse than _Rise of the Nephilim_.

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