Entheos - Time Will Take Us All (Metal Blade Records)
For many years, bands such as Meshuggah, Tool, and Opeth have been affectionately referred to as 'thinking (hu)man's metal'. From multiple individual movements within one song, to complex instrumental arrangements, these bands set the bar high for any aspiring metal band to weight their songs against. In the case of the former, several Master's theses have been written exploring these elements from an academic perspective.
Poised to join this pantheon of head spinning/head banging metal titans, Santa Cruz based duo Entheos are back to bend minds with their third album, Time Will Take Us All. Comprised of vocalist Chaney Crabb and guitarist/drummer Navene Koperweis (formerly of Animals As Leaders and Animosity), the album is a trip through time and space that would no doubt earn a tip of the hat from the likes of Cynic, Pestilence, and the late, great Death.
The journey into a realm of chaos begins with "Absolute Zero", a rapid descent into somewhere resembling an uncanny version of M.C. Escher's 'Relativity', the famous print of stairs going in all directions. Indeed, the cover of Time Will Take Us All depicts something similar to this concept: a place both familiar and terrifying.
If one were to decide they would rather listen to something other than the original soundtrack of 'Doom' while playing the classic videogame, "In Purgatory" would be the perfect choice. The otherworldly textures and suspenseful passages are more than suitable for blowing away demons and other creatures from the underworld.
As mighty as Crabb's roars and shrieks are, her singing voice is just as impressive, as demonstrated in "I Am The Void" and "Oblivion". In the latter's case, Crabb's vocals are backed by elegant acoustic guitars and the unmistakable stylings of legendary bassist, Evan Brewer (Fallujah, ex-The Faceless, ex-Reflux, ex-Animosity), who currently serves as Entheos' studio bass player.
Kicking off an April/May run with Whitechapel, Archspire, and Signs of the Swarm, the members of Entheos will be joined on stage by guitarists Robert Brown and Brian James, formerly of Slaughter to Prevail and Fallujah respectively. The association with so many incredible bands might draw crowds, but the skill and power of each song is certainly what will keep them and turn them into fans.
The Metal Mayan review:
While the eggheads of heavy metal scratch their heads and argue over what sub-sub-subgenre to classify bands such as Entheos (as they did with other bands like Protest the Hero and Dååth to name a few), I simply consider them in the category of "What even was that?!" It is here where some of my favorite bands share a home, void of any specific genre or label.
Entheos has excited me from the start and Time Will Take Us All only strengthens that feeling. The combination of Chaney Crabb's immense pipes with the multi-instrumental talent of Navene Koperweis, fused together and painted over by the low end of Evan Brewer gets me stoked every time I think about it.
These things really come together in "Oblivion", and really challenge me as a guitar player myself to reflect on what extreme music can be. In other words, this is definitely what I would consider 'thinking (hu)man's metal'.
Be sure to catch Entheos' huge upcoming tour supporting Whitechapel, and visit your local record store to pick up a copy of Time Will Take Us All, out now on Metal Blade Records!
Advance copy courtesy of Atom Splitter PR and Metal Blade Records