There are more and more Italian bands dedicated to a black metal that, while not denying the roots of the genre, well sunk in the icy Scandinavian forests, draw inspiration from their land of origin giving the sound a different aura, enriching it with folk, pagan or ambient elements. Enisum come from Val di Susa (an area of our country that, like others, is about to be raped in the name of mercantile logic against the will of the people, but this is unfortunately another story), and the moniker is nothing but the reverse transcription of Musinè, mountain symbol of the valley and, for various reasons, the scene of legends and mysteries. The project founded in the last decade by Lys (at the time with the stage name of Silentium) after five works made independently between 2006 and 2013, in recent years has taken the form of real band with the entry into the formation of Leynir (bass), Dead Soul (drums) and Epheliin (female voice). As it often happens, this allows the musician who holds the reins of the group to progress further from the compositional point of view, taking advantage of a constant comparison with other members, and this seems to have happened to Lys: if Samoht Nara was already a good album, Arpitanian Lands is a further leap in quality, pushing the sound up and down the steep slopes of the valleys, now with the acceleration typical of the genre, now with airy openings of post-black matrix. If one of the inspiring groups of Enisum, even by admission of the same Lys, are the Wolves In The Throne Room (in addition to the magnificent and underrated Lunar Aurora), you should not expect to find in this work only the typical Cascadian sounds, if not in the form of inevitable references placed here and there (especially in the song used to make the official video, Desperate Souls): the goodness of Arpitanian Lands resides particularly in the ability of Enisum to express a rather personal stylistic figure that, often, exceeds the real black to push on lands much more melodic and evocative. In this sense, the three most characterizing tracks are Chiusella’s Waters, in which a dreamy chorus alternates with the excellent guitar work, Fauna’s Souls, with a folk soul even if not completely explicit, and the wonderful The Place Where You Died (here too the Wolves In The Throne Room peep out, especially in its first half): obviously these tracks are also speckled by the robust rhythmic pace and the scream of Lys, but the harmonies in the background create an emotional substrate that is well suited to the declaration of love for a nature that will continue to dominate, until the last moments of life on this planet, the human race and its arrogance. Arpitanian Lands is an excellent album and there are no plausible excuses to ignore it.

2015 – Dusktone