An autumn album par excellence, Futile, the long-distance debut of Eudaimony, is a perfect example of how music should be played and interpreted when it intends to convey negative emotions inextricably linked to any kind of existential malaise. The band consists of rather well-known musicians in the scene, starting with Naglfar’s guitarist, Swede Marcus E. Norman, who here is joined by the three Germans Matthias Jell, ex-vocalist of Dark Fortress, Jörg Heemann (better known as Thelemnar), drummer of Secrets Of The Moon, and Peter Honsalek, owner of the neoclassical project Nachtreich, on piano and viola. From this fine mix of diverse influences the result that emerges is beyond satisfying: Futile is an album that rests its foundations on a depressive black metal diluted by a dark soul that, often, brings ours to lap the territories beaten by Katatonia of the masterpieces Discouraged Ones and Tonight’s Decisions; compared to many of the dsbm matrix records, the sounds are perfect thanks to Markus Stock’s production and this undoubtedly ends up enhancing more the melancholic aspect than the harrowing pain of living normally expressed with buzzing guitars and excruciating screams: in fact, Matthias’ scream is harsh in a way that is not excessive and ties in perfectly with the atmospheres of the record, which does not at all disappoint the expectations created in light of such an intriguing line-up. The record unravels mostly in a slow manner, except for a few rare accelerations (as in the title track), proving to be the true soundtrack of an existence that is headed to its inescapable end without having managed to leave any tangible trace. Despair, then, is the common trait that binds such splendid tracks as the opener Ways To Indifference, A Window In The Attic and the album’s true masterpiece, the concluding December’s Hearse, episodes in which a mournful melody makes the bleak landscapes sketched by Norman and co. all the more dramatic. Futile would flow toward its denouement evenly, if an anomalous track like Portraits did not come along to break the cloak of grief that grips it from the first note: the presence of an illustrious guest like Mick Moss (Antimatter) on vocals ends up making the track very much like a potential Leaving Eden outtake and, despite its undeniable beauty, it appears objectively out of line with the album’s overall mood. A flaw (so to speak) that is absolutely marginal, especially when Futile fades out on the wonderful and excruciating melodies of December’s Hearse, leaving us with the feeling of having listened to an excellent work, much more heartfelt and sincere than those of advertised names in the scene that, of the exhibition of pain have made it a trademark, unfortunately losing sight of the spontaneity of the songwriting and the depth of the emotions that this genre is able to evoke.

2013 – Cold Dimensions 2016 – Grau Records