Enigmatic Smile by Annisokay (Long Branch/SPV)
Annisokay is actually a pretty humble name for a metalcore band this wondrously phenomenal. Fans of Stateside acts such as We Came As Romans and Memphis May Fire will be absolutely enraptured when encountering what this German collective has to offer the world at large. Enigmatic Smile is their second release for Long Branch/SPV album, and judging by the 11 songs heard within, this could be the one that breaks Annisokay out in a big and exciting way. Their previous album The Lucid Dream(er) was certainly indicative of greater glories ahead, and now with the unveiling of Enigmatic Smile, the promise has been thoroughly fulfilled.
Enigmatic Smile explodes into your senses, with the poignant refrains of Carried Away supplying an expansive wall of auditory imagery. The emotional dynamics continue with a visit into Naked City, with its impactful “we’re all equal” lyrical content rendering a lasting impression. Snowblind packs a devastating punch with its emotional “when I get lost” revelations echoing throughout the song.
Panic Attack displays a vast amount of urgency that pummels the mind before raging into more melodic territory. Wolves In The Walls growls with a vibrant intensity, combining a chilling unclean ferocity with spiraling clean vocals. Fragile Line is anything but delicate, with superbly intensive growls and mesmerizing singing swirling within a kaleidoscope of ravaging sound.
After an ominous beginning, the sonic exploration of Traveler commences. Then the reflective Life Cycles sends the listener into a rapturous state of bliss. Fame then launches the listening back into the rocking adventure known as Annisokay.
New Autumn Light starts off like a dream before slamming into a barrage of mesmerizing artistry. And then the anthem-like inflections of What is Left closes out Enigmatic Smile, leaving the listener wanting to hear a whole lot more.
The stellar Annisokay lineup consists of Dave Grunewald on shouts, Christoph Wieczorek on clean vocals and guitar, Norbert Rose on bass, Daniel Herrmann on drums, and Philipp Kretzschmar on guitar. Joey Sturgis and Will Putney both had a hand with the production, and the results are stellar! Expect to be grinning ear to ear when you hear the amazing Enigmatic Smile by Annisokay. Here’s hoping this collective make their way into the States for a few shows or a full-on tour.
(Review by Ken Morton)
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