Neurosis - Enemy Of The Sun
Remembering this was originally recorded and released in 1993, "Enemy of the Sun" can be seen as a prophetic record. While metal that incorporates drone and samples from horror and like films has been done to death (and done to death by industrial, crust, punk, etc. as well) this was fairly new and daring in the early 90s, when even to be still playing metal in the wake of grunge was risky. Neurosis made several good to great sludgy, post-metal records before succumbing to time, but this release, originally put out on Alternative Tentacles (!) still stands up, and cuts across a lot of lines that have been commodified into sub-sub genres like doom, sludge, goth, crust,stoner, etc.
As with the best metal, though, the riff is king. "Riff" is appropriate because there is basically a single riff throughout the eight (plus two bonus ) tracks, a muddy monster of a riff that makes a good case for it being the only one the band needs to get their point across. Except for a slow, and eventually plodding riff on the title track, there is a fierceness to the songs that, with the added menace of gritty, muffled production, makes for a heavy heavy listen. The occasional keyboard or feminine voice are brief, and barely register in the mind of one being pummeled by the likes of "Lost," "Lexicon," or "Cleanse."
"Enemy of the Sun" sounds familiar only because it anticipated much of what has transpired in slightly mainstream metal since its debut in 1993. Neurosis ought to get some well-deserved kudos for both expanding metal's subject matter and sonic scope while at the same time upping the ante in six-string brutality. This is a smart ballsy must-have.
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