Eye Of Solitude, compared to most doom bands, are distinguished by a more conspicuous production that, almost magically, does not come at the expense of quality. In fact, despite the fact that several years elapse between one release and another, the band led by Daniel Neagoe frequently tickles the palate of its many admirers, gained thanks to the publication of a masterpiece such as Canto III (2013) and two other magnificent works such as Sui Caedere (2012) and Dear Insanity (2014). In 2015, the name of the London band made headlines, first thanks to the split with the Dutch band Faal, and then, also for the charitable value of the operation, with the online publication of the single Lugubrious Valedictory, aimed at raising funds to be donated to the families of those who lost their lives in the Colectiv Club tragedy in Bucharest last October. Having said all this, let’s talk about the new album Cenotaph, which is due for release on 1 September and which, at the moment, does not see any label taking on the burden (but above all the honour) of its publication. If, as we said, Canto III was the quintessence of Eye Of Solitude‘s musical feeling and could be considered, in some ways, something unrepeatable thanks to its perfect expression of a melodic and paroxysmal death doom, Dear Insanity moved more towards a funeral with wide ambient traits; Cenotaph succeeds in the not easy task of assimilating the best of both works, staying certainly on positions closer to the previous ep but enriching them with those emotional crescendos that are the trademark of Neagoe and members. Compared to the work of Dante’s inspiration, Cenotaph is certainly less immediate, highlighting, as already noted in Dear Insanity, a guitar attitude more inclined to accompany the sound rather than to stand as the protagonist, so that, in the end, the real key instrument of the work becomes the inimitable growl of Daniel. Let’s try to zero out the interventions of the Romanian vocalist: it would still be a superlative instrumental album to which, however, would be missing the key element able to make physical the torment and bewilderment evoked by the music. In fact, the emotion that few like Eye Of Solitude are able to induce today, comes from an overall work, from the compositional afflatus of a band that moves in unison, preparing the ground, through rarefied passages and almost lulling atmospheres, to the deflagration of a pathos that takes the form of a swirling crescendo of unbearable intensity. This is, in broad terms, the description of a song like A Somber Guest, one of the absolute peaks of the career of a band unique, today, for its particular work of crumbling of every psychic barrier that the unconscious tries to erect. The pain, the fear of the unknown, the inevitability of death: all this is overthrown on the listener, at first dismayed and defenceless in front of such an offensive, then gradually able to interpenetrate with the music by being consciously overwhelmed by an emotional tide that, retreating, leaves as a precious trace of its passage a cathartic wonder. First the title track and then This Goodbye. The Goodbye, then, are examples of that rarefaction of sound that, if it does not reach the intensity exhibited in other passages of the album, is the magnificent prelude to melodic openings that induce tears without remission, as happens in an exemplary and definitive way in the second part of the other masterpiece song Loss, sealing yet another monumental work by Eye Of Solitude. Cenotaph is a must for those who want to face without preconceptions an art form that, instead of hiding the miseries of existence by grotesquely covering them with an artificial joy, exhibits them without modesty and then transforms them into a liberating experience, making the deepest chords of the human soul vibrate.

2016 – Independent