Erlen Meyer
Erlen Meyer

Shortly before recording this album, Erlen Meyer‘s drummer, Romain Djoudi, was killed in a motorcycle accident. The remaining band members’ feelings of anger and grief became direct inspiration during the subsequent recording of this harrowing album.

Erlen Meyer play a heavy, dissonant brand of sludgy post-hardcore in the vein of Overmars and later-era Breach, a style of music perfectly suited to their rage. An atmosphere of unrest and darkness hangs like a fog throughout the album and provides the necessary context for the powerful dirges. The vocals are of the mid-range hardcore bark variety, although there are several spoken-interlude sections (all in French, again reminiscent of Overmars) and they sometimes reach into higher-pitched black metal shrieks, as at the fantastic end of “Agatha.” The throaty yells are full of passion and perfectly reflect the band’s intensity.

The mid-paced sludge riffs get a little samey after a while, but what they lack in variety they make up for in passion. A couple of short instrumental tracks also help break up the monotony somewhat, providing brief intermissions between the lengthy compositions.

This is a surprisingly emotional, dark work, fraught with genuine anger that does not let up throughout its duration. I haven’t heard their previous recordings from 2005-6, but I would be interested to see what Erlen Meyer come up with in the future, even if they aren’t able to recapture the same raw power that this record emanates.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by J. D. Anderson
February 26th, 2014

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