REVIEW: Envy | Atheist’s Cornea (2015)


BAND: Envy
RELEASE: Atheist’s Cornea (2015)
REVIEWER: Riz Farooqi of King Ly Chee
Final Rating: 10/10…our first 10/10 review

The first thing that can be said about this release is said musically when the first track Blue Moonlight begins…for it starts with a few seconds of a sound that Envy has most recently been tinkering with – more quiet, cerebral, post-rock, shoegazey type of stuff. The stuff that I listen to once or twice and then forget it’s even playing on the decks. But within seconds of this first song, it seems Envy too wanted to flip the script and return back to the sound that ACTUALLY brought them all that much-deserved attention in the first place…their frenetic, chaotic, heart-piercing music and throat shattering screams. It was those early albums that solidified Envy’s place in the world of emotional heavy music. And it is THAT world that they have so successfully returned to on this release. Thank god.

This is an 8 song release of yesteryear Envy released 5 years after their last record Recitation. Every song on this release has that similar old vibe which is all so familiar and comforting, especially to those of us who have always found a deep connection to Envy’s cathartic releases. That is not to say that they don’t try some new twists, after all it is 2015 and these guys consist of some of the best musicians on the planet – it is only expected of a band of this caliber to try some new elements. The driving rock on second track Ignorant Rain and the End of the World is a great break from the first half of the song’s emotional wreckage. Third song Shining Finger begins with some melancholic cleanly strummed guitars and vocalist Tetsuya brings some of that more spoken word stylings to the mix…dude, it’s just fucking beautiful…and when he returns back to his trademark screaming, the mix of the underlying more mellow straight ahead rock with his heart wrenching screams above really does a number on your own emotions. While you’re relishing the stunning beauty of this song, Tetsuye then throws you for another twist – he starts singing – you know, with melody. He even starts the 4th track Ticking Time and String, one of the slowest Envy songs I’ve ever heard, with singing and it works. REALLY works. (The outro of this song is how an outro of every album should be…)

This is Envy at a whole new level of Envy-ness. Everything that you will read about this release in the coming months is all that it is…

Envy has always taken you on an emotional roller coaster in its music and as mentioned above, is a style of music that connects with thousands all over the world for good reason. It is also even more remarkable that Envy sings in Japanese yet is STILL able to connect with all walks of life. That is a feat that not many bands have been able to replicate.

Add this release up there with all of Envy’s classics: From Here to Eternity / All the Footprints… / Dead Sinking Story…this album will also be on repeat as much as those were.

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