Ensis, from Luxembourg, formed only last year, and September 2007 saw the release of their debut EP on Respawn Records. Describing themselves as a death-thrash fusion, it is a fairly apt classification of their music, although Patrick Didier's rasped vocals wouldn't be too out of place in the hardcore genre. Combining the melodic death leanings of At The Gates with post-Slayer contemporary thrash of bands such as the now defunct Stampin' Ground, Ensis write aurally engaging songs that demand your attention through their succinct, hard-hitting impetus. It's been an oft used device in thrash song structures for many years now, though the progression from double time to half time to normal time on opening track 'Neverending Battle' with concomitant infectious riffing is executed with articulate precision, and will be guaranteed to get heads banging, feet tapping, and fists pumping. What the Luxembourgian quintet lack in originality, they more than compensate for with some accomplished compositions and their convincing delivery. My only minor criticism is that the vocals, as effective as they are, lack any real variance that would otherwise add a little more depth to the songs - Didier' homogeneous vocal style is occasionally misplaced over particular passages. That said, it is hard to fault 'Overture...' as a debut release, and with a fairly good production, and impressive artwork by one of the band's guitarists, Patrick Hallé, I strongly recommend that everyone into this style of metal check out Ensis immediately. Very impressive.
OVERTURE (THE BURNING SHRINE OF HYPOCRISY)
Review by Mark Holmes
1) Neverending Battle
2) Last Gulp
3) Two Lovers, True Enemies
4) How To Love My Foolish Mind
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:
"Ensis write aurally engaging songs that demand your attention through their succinct, hard-hitting impetus"