Artist: Enterprise Earth
In every living creature there is evil lurking—whether it runs rampant, seizing control of their psyche or whether it rests in remission, occupying the corners of one’s conscience. There is evil in us all. And without getting too carried away or dramatic, that pervasive, haunting occupant in our spirit is what collectively gives rise to Luciferous, the third full-length record by critically acclaimed technical deathcore outfit Enterprise Earth. Brilliantly blending technical death metal with progressive elements and a couple heaping scoops of deathcore to even it all out, Luciferous is the next installment in the band’s otherwise immaculate discography, and, it might not come as a shock, but they are damn good at what they do. Closing in on one full hour of murderous metallic overtones blended with bodacious amounts of brutalizing deathcore and pummeling technicality, Luciferous is also home to monumental, mood-setting atmospheric portions, showcasing that Enterprise Earth are far from a one-trick pony and easy able to adapt and expand their song to keep listeners coming back for more.
Instrumentally, Lucerifous is Enterprise Earth’s most diverse offering to date, without question. Where Embodiment might have been their most technical and Patient 0 a good balance of intricacy and intensity, Luciferous has it all and then some. From the opening salvos of “Behold, Malevolence,” through the annals of the lead single “He Exists” and even during the dirging, melancholy “Scars of the Past,” Enterprise Earth establish that they are still more than adept at bringing the heavy. Percussionist Aaron O’Toole establishes his maintained dominance over the kit, plowing away with break-neck footwork and machine gun blast beats that make songs like “Ashamed to Be Human” hit as hard a freight train, while “Behold, Malevolence” slices away at the listener with foray after foray of blistering blast beats. O’Toole’s technicality shines, especially during the first three tracks Luciferous has to offer, but songs like “Scars of the Past” and “The Failsafe Fallacy” highlight his ability to work excellently with bassist Rob Saireh to create looming, low moments of unsettling atmosphere—true especially of “The Failsafe Fallacy”—or atmospheric, drifting and melancholic moments abundant on “Scars of the Past.” Fundamentally, however, O’Toole’s greatest service to Enterprise Earth’s dynamic is his ability to be the foundation for guitarist and songwriter BJ Sampson as well as guitarist Gabriel Mangold. Sampson and Mangold are what give Enterprise Earth’s instrumentation a true leg above many of the band’s contemporaries. “Internal Suffering,” or the monstrous “He Exists” are examples of their proficiency across the fretboard, while “We Are Immortal” is a whirlwind technically-infused anthem and “Behold, Malevolence” is four minutes of straight-up aggression. Where the duo are technically proficient, they are also immensely talented, both at crafting moments of unending brutality and at crafting fluid, marvelous songs—a skill refined and made exemplary on Luciferous.
There’s a good chance that 80% of the people who know about Enterprise Earth know about Enterprise Earth for their frontman, Dan Watson. Fair—while the band’s breakout EP, 23, and to a lesser extent, Patient 0—were essentially vocal showcases for Watson’s prowess, Embodiment and Luciferous especially are a different story. Here, Watson’s skill shines alongside the band’s musical mastery, which makes Enterprise Earth less a gimmick and more a centerpiece to modern deathcore. Now, none of that is to say that Watson doesn’t deserve the hype, so to speak—he has and continues to on Luciferous. From the haunting build-up-to-breakdown on “He Exists,” to the unusually introspective and emotional atmosphere throughout “Scars of the Past,” Watson channels some of his work from his 2018 project, Mire Lore, and gives it fresh life on Luciferous. Ranging from standard-fare storytelling to the personal and punishingly aggressive, the content of Enterprise Earth’s 2019 record is as diverse as its musicianship, with Watson’s voice following suit. In short, there isn’t a lot that need be said about Watson’s skillset that hasn’t already been said by me or by a million enthused fans in Facebook deathcore groups the whole wide web over; suffice it to say that his work on Luciferous is some of his best yet, lyrically and vocally.
Enterprise Earth have grown monumentally in the two years since the release of Embodiment. Maintaining the same sense of technicality and the same energy but working more on balance and careful songwriting, Luciferous is the band at their best without question. Blending atmosphere with unruly aggression and enough flair for fanciful fretwork to keep the listener coming back for more, the band’s latest installment is a worthy figurehead to their boastful discography, standing to bring out the evil from any and every listener, no matter how pure.
For Fans Of: Oceano, Lorna Shore, Angelmaker, A Wake in Providence
By: Connor Welsh