|Artwork by DehnSora|
Italian progressive metal band Ephel Duath have undergone several transformations and line-up changes over the course of their amorphous career. The current incarnation of the group is the product of another complete turnover ― only founding member Davide Tiso remains and occasional drummer Marco Minneman has returned to the fold. Steve DiGiorgio joins them on guitar, as does legendary vocalist (and Tiso's partner) Karyn Crisis. The three-song EP, On Death and Cosmos, is a welcome evolution in Ephel Duath's sound.
While still jazzy and avant-garde in aesthetic, there's a sense of restraint and keen intelligence that their earlier work lacked. For example, "Black Prism" pulls back to become positively minimal by the end, the lone guitar bare and aching. Crisis's astoundingly deep, resonant voice is a highlight, the vastness of her range often providing a welcome counterpoint to the myopic intricacy of the music. An extremely promising restart to Ephel Duath, On Death and Cosmos is the kind of substantial EP that makes one long for a full-length.
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