Inimicus Generis Humani
Review by Alex on February 10, 2020.
Ensnared put out Dysangelium in 2017, through that release the name gained traction and verbal noise in the underground, then began to go silent for some time. It was an excellent album that demanded and was worth more that was given, and I stand by that statement till now. Yet, I blame myself for not picking up the vinyl copy of Dysangelium even after having had enough sessions with the music. Either I could not afford it, or I was anticipating the release of something more important. Fast-forward to the current; as a joint effort between Dark Descent Records and Invictus Productions whom provided oversight for the splits Possession put out with Spite and Venefixion in 2019, Ensnared's latest contribution to the sub-genre of black/death metal, Inimicus Gemeris Humani, will meet the ears of many anticipating their follow-up to Dysangelium on February 14th, 2020.
Though agitated between black and death metal, Ensnared's footsteps always appeared to be comfortable in that mid-region of non-commitment. Like the odd event of putting a rake into a pile of autumn leaves to find one that had not lost its chlorophyll completely and was still soft texturally, similarly in the landscape of black/death metal, few bands exist that have not fully accepted a partisan stance while still under the umbrella of both. Here with Ensnared you get the feeling it’s a bride about to be married that isn't quite sure whether to proceed with the ceremony or forfeit to the belly-butterflies. Rewardingly, it's this reluctance that keeps listeners hanging on to every note Ensnared play on Inimicus Gemeris Humani that even with a new full-length or to be consistent, a second better lover, still finds the decision of commitment far too complicated and sacrificial to make. By having no real strings attached, Ensnared is able to challenge themselves, play freely and have fun altogether.
'Spiritual Necrosis' should give you a reasonable idea of what's been the story of Ensnared since their debut full-length Dysangelium. Most certainly you can tell they are walking towards death metal whilst simultaneously staring in the direction of black metal. Because they can both with absolute precision, even an awkward mobile posture gets them to their destination without a slip or fumble. Thus, what the final result mirrors is a technically compatible set of peripherals safely sealed into a shell of an awkward and somewhat unorthodox shape and texture. On 'Throne of Transformation', old death metal habits shake hands in healthy spirit with black metal and technical soloing to mold an ongoing corporeal development that does not appear messy; instead, an attentively detailed - smooth transition when woven into shape like a professional contortionist. 'Disciples of the Whip' applies a subtle evolution enacted with the still present flexible textures of the bands’ playing while attacking with more pace and vivacity. Imagine a building being engineered with each floor utilizing different yet compatible material; a chaotically beautiful sight.
In conveyor belt fashion, 'Katharsis Through Terror' down the assembly line retains some of the zesty flare Ensnared's drum and riffing technics, but also takes time to evolve from the recognizable motion by applying a rhythmic groove to solder the more complicated wiring of their music. This feature was utilized on their debut record but not to such rewarding effect. Having now found the means to elevate their music while still in that middle-ground shows Ensnared would move from where they are just not in the direction you probably had been expecting. Inimicus Gemeris Humani appears to be split in 3 parts (via interludes) that adhere to the foundation of the material even as the softer side of the music takes shape through acoustic and ambient intermezzos. You won't detect a departure from the primary objective of the music on Inimicus Gemeris Humani, instead a refreshing insertion of rhythms utilized to help their hybridized extremity metamorphose.
Rating: 9 out of 10474