THIS WEEK I’M LISTENING TO...ENCHANTYA Cerberus (Inverse Records)
With a complicated backstory – but a truly exciting album to promote – Portugal’s Enchantya came to life as the vision of frontwoman Rute Fevereiro as an additional creative outlet to her role fronting all-female metal band Black Widows. A more symphonic gothic outfit that the day job, Enchantya released their first EP (‘Moonlighting The Dreamer’) in 2006 and finally followed it with an album ‘Dark Rising’ for Massacre six years later. After touring the album the band split up – good ol’ musical differences – but by March 2016 Fevereiro was ready to unveil a new line-up and their second album ‘On Light And Wrath’ was issued by Inverse in 2019. With Covid putting the kybosh on the majority of the band’s touring plans the enforced downtime was spent working on a new album and the result is ‘Cerberus’, an ambitious and overarching offering which, in its passion, power and diversity, calls to mind the work of After Forever.
Named after the three-headed dog that stood guard at the gates of Hades, ‘Cerberus’ is an electrifying body of work. There’s no fillers here, every song earns its rightful place in the album’s running order, but it’s the longer offerings like ‘Sons Of Chaos’, ‘Existence’ and in particular set closer ‘Inward’ that showcase the band at its best: Fevereiro gets the chance to demonstrate her full range from growl to soprano and her bandmates – guitarist Fernando Campos, bassist Fernando Barroso, keyboard player Pedro Anyunes and drummer Bruno Guilherme – have the space to flex their muscles and show off what they can do. Campos in particular is obviously a man of no mean talent, with soloing that errs on the side of perfection, while Guilherme certainly earns his keep behind the kit. This is a great album from a great band, and we can only hope to hear much more from Enchantya over the coming years.
‘All Down In Flames’ - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_LQvFFQotBc
‘Existence’ - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=juMKDAFlBy8
‘Collective Souls’ - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ALbT42FqHE0
© John Tucker May 2023