The new work by the Sardinian band Apneica is extremely welcome for several reasons, which go beyond the intrinsic value of this ep entitled Tra Rocce e Cortecce. Alessandro Seghene’s band blew me away with the magnificent ep Pulsazioni… Conversione, in which the death doom material merged at its best to the post metal pulses laying the foundations to carve out to his creature a role as absolute protagonist in the national scene; unfortunately, the next full length Vulnerabile Risalita had instead partially disappointed me, despite its objective overall goodness, as the bar had been moved almost entirely to the second of its components partly removing the drama and pathos typical of doom metal. Tra Rocce e Cortecce marks not so much a further change of direction but rather an ideal settlement of the style pursued by Apneica: if on the one hand there is the return to harsher sounds, with the good Ignazio Simula who devotes himself almost exclusively to growl, leaving the use of clean voice to the good Piera Demurtas, on the other hand is even more fluid interpenetration with the post metal that gives rise to beautiful melodic openings within a sound that remains, however, anything but soft. Last but not least, the use of the launeddas, the traditional and peculiar wind instrument of the Sardinian tradition, without appearing out of context adds, if anything, an important value to the development of the album: it’s thanks to all these elements that the ep highlights again the Sardinian band, with four intense songs, with a good synthesis even if not very short, and all equally full of darkness and pathos, even if each one shows different characteristics. The launeddas introduce Terra with their magnificent timbre, a wonderful song with its slow pace, while Occhi Celati shows the more intimate face of Apneica with the accentuated contrast between growl and caressing female voice; Dove Cresceva La Foresta highlights even more the excellent guitar work that characterizes the whole work, in a sphere that sometimes touches a certain darkwave transfigured by the compact death doom base, but it’s the beautiful melody of the final Astratta Solitudine to mark the work in a definitive way, leading to a final more rarefied with the ending of launeddas that bring us back to the point from which everything started. The lyrics in Italian, always rich and focused on naturalistic themes, are an interesting element of discontinuity compared to the habits of the genre and further enrich an album that puts Apneica in the position that was hoped for at the time of the release of Pulsazioni… Conversione, to which the new ep is somehow linked by presenting the opening track Alba Artificiale as a bonus track, confirming a sort of return to those sounds that had impressed so much four years ago.

2018 – GS Productions