"some music was meant to stay underground..."

Enemy Of The Sun - "Caedium" (CD)

Enemy Of The Sun - "Caedium" CD cover image

"Caedium" track listing:

1. Lithium
2. Another End of the Rainbow
3. I Am One
4. Chasing the Dragon
5. Castaways in the N.W.O.
6. The Power of Mankind
7. Ticket
8. Paradigm
9. Tryout
10. The Golden Horizon
11. Sky Shooting Stars
12. Stolen Sky
13. Aimless
14. In Memoriam
17. Blood Puppets

Reviewed by on August 5, 2010

"Enemy Of The Sun's 'Caedium' is full of great playing and unique twists, but there are moments when the band tries to cram too many style changes into the songs."

You've got to give Enemy Of The Sun credit for the diversity of sound on the band's latest disc, "Caedium." At the same time, some of those twists and turns can leave a listener feeling a bit off-kilter.

"Caedium" is from the Latin word for a self-inflicted death, which is entirely appropriate, given the nihilist nature of Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons' graphic novel "Watchmen," which inspired the lyrics. Singer/lyricist Jules Naveri says the album is full of "thoughts inside the burning world."

The playing here is top-notch, with guitarist/producer Waldemar Sorychta joined by drummer Daniel Zeman, bassist Alla Fedynitch, who's toured with Pain, and Naveri, of the Finnish band Profane Omen. They ably cross from hard rock to acoustic and super-speedy metal at the drop of a hat. Take, for example, "I Am One," which features acoustic and electric guitars alternating between Spanish-influenced classical guitar and brutal metal riffs, with Naveri's vocals delivered in everything from gentle tones to brutal shouts.

Then, the next track, "Chasing the Dragon," comes in with a feel that's almost Asian or Middle Eastern, before heading into heaviness. The band also experiments with more straight-ahead hard rock on "Paradigm," and industrial sounds on "Castaways in the N.W.O." that are reminiscent of "Land Of Rape And Honey"-era Ministry in some ways. With its hand-claps and gentle riffs, "Aimless" is quite nearly a pop song, with a little bit of a Pink Floyd feel.

Unfortunately, there are times when the band just tries to cram too many style changes into a single song. "The Power of Mankind" stands out as an example, with classical sounds combining with growled vocals and a slow section that feels like it comes out of nowhere, and just leaves the listener confused. And, frankly, tracks like "In Memoriam" and "Bloodpuppets" simply feel like filler.

Enemy Of The Sun's "Caedium" is full of great playing and unique twists, but there are moments when the band tries to cram too many style changes into the songs. Still, in this age of cookie-cutter songs, it's hard to fault a band for being too ambitious.

Highs: "I Am One," "Castaways in the N.W.O." and "Aimless"

Lows: Confused songwriting on tracks like "The Power of Mankind."

Bottom line: An expertly played album that sometimes overreaches in terms of stylistic shifts.

Rated 3.0 out of 5 skulls
3.0 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)