Emrevoid - _Riverso_
(Drown Within Records, 2014)
by: Chaim Drishner (7.5 out of 10)
Not everyone is into philosophies and ideas behind music; not everyone consciously decides what pigeonhole certain music would fit into; some folks just want to shred and rip and send everybody to Kingdom Come with an array of hostile frequencies. Italian enigmatic Emrevoid, although categorized as black/death metal band, has a lot more in common with death metal (even with doom/death sometimes) than with pure breed black metal, but it manages to incorporate -- intentionally or otherwise -- some of that black metal atmosphere that covers, like a dark blanket, the album's better part. It may be due to the occasional high pitched shrieks or the way the electric guitars are tuned and the way they're being played, especially in the faster parts; there's that colossal 'blackness' and bleakness governing this short yet phenomenal recording's songwriting.

Emrevoid plays a semi-technical, ultra-slow-to-ultra-fast style of metal that is not too common; they mix slow and atmospheric death/doom metal parts with faster, mid-paced 'classic death metal' with a hint of grindcore, manifested especially in the short yet sweet blastbeat sections, and a twist of brutal death metal of the cookie monster type. In addition, some ritual-oriented, spoken verse sections were introduced, adding a shamanic dimension to the vitriol. But never mind the style of metal on display, throughout the recording there's that invisible, intangible thread of cold morbidity attributed to the most atmospheric, 'astral' black metal out there.

Emrevoid's _Riverso_ showcases relentless and hostile music from start to finish; a mixture of the heavy and the dark converging into this excellent release. The musicians' knowledge in how to execute, almost perfectly, every aspect of the heaviest of the metallic expressions is commendable.

The complex music displayed on _Riverso_ continues the band's short legacy from its previous recording, but unlike the tight grinding death metal found on the band's self titled debut album, _Riverso_ is tamer, darker and more complex -- and now, for the first time, the band has also introduced that 'blackened metal' vibe, an aural signature embedded into each of the tracks, making the death metal on display more aloof, infusing it with dark spirituality death metal often lacks.

There's that post-modern edge to the bread-and-butter metal on display; one moment you may think this is some classic death metal album you're listening to (even, dare we say, old-school by nature), while in the next moment you'll hear the cold, futuristic, post-metal-ish washes of quasi-industrial sound associated often with bands such as Blut Aus Nord or even Deathspell Omega, if you catch the drift.

Despite the multiple aesthetics on display, surprisingly enough _Riverso_ does not fail even once. Every moment on this recording is calculated and beautiful madness, that even though may sound as extreme as metal can get, the many intriguing shows playing simultaneously on the stage that is this album will pull you in for another round of sublime brutality -- be it black metal, death metal, all of the above or none of the above.

_Riverso_ is one of the strongest outputs of year 2014, showing an impressive prowess in executing, almost to perfection, every goddamn style extreme metal has got to offer; an exhibition of sordid sonic colors of various metallic schools all seamlessly fused and encapsulated in this 23-minute EP. The only weak point in the entire recording would be the rare occasions in which the music sounds a little bit too generic in regard to death metal, but those moments are fortunately few and far between.

In the end, this mini album should be sought, played and listened to as many times as humanly possible, as it's one of the darkest, heaviest and most punishing recordings out there (as well as one of the more intelligent recordings in the underground), having an added value of being virtually unclassified yet possessing an undeniable quality, whichever musical left-hand path it decides to tread. If you've enjoyed other equally good contemporary dark Italian blackened death metal albums such as Simulacro's _Fall of the Last Idol_ for instance, _Riverso_ is so much for you, ladies and gentlemen.

Contact: http://emrevoid.bandcamp.com/album/riverso

(article published 13/11/2014)

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