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Senmuth - Amenemhet III - 70%

ConorFynes, February 4th, 2011

A very cool EP from this Russian industrial metal project. While my relationship with the music of Senmuth has typically been that of a love/hate ordeal (and quite a familiar one at that), I always try to keep my ears open to hear what Valery Av will put out next, in the hopes that it is fresh even to someone who has already been versed in almost a hundred of his works thus far. 'Amenemhet III' is one of those works from Senmuth that while not breaking the barriers of sound for the existing style, still sounds quite a bit more lively than the average, although the EP turns out to be rather inconsistent.

The album returns to the harsh metal sound that Senmuth renewed with 2009's 'Sebek'. While much of Senmuth's heavier-oriented material could be said to be a bit weak and simplistic, the first couple of songs feature some better guitar work from Av than one would usually expect, showing that he is a capable guitarist. All but one track on 'Amenemhet III' are considered 'remixes' of previous tracks, but as might be a first for a Senmuth remix EP, the songs here sound almost as if they are original pieces all of themselves. Most explicitly new here are the vocals of Eresh on 'Песня Арфиста в Доме Атефа', which is simply the best vocal delivery I have heard on a Senmuth track yet; a soaring performance from Eresh that has a romantic, almost operatic touch to it.

The EP's more metal material is worthy, yet not particularly interesting. Where the EP really hits its mark is during the final two tracks. 'Песня Арфиста в Доме Атефа' features the great Eresh vocalwork and a calming, near-ballad sound to it. Right after is 'Книга Двух Путей', which takes the music and thrusts it right into a psychedelic raga journey, featuring some very trippy and spiritual guitar work to cap off the EP.

While the sound here is not exactly original for Senmuth, I must say that this is one of the best executed Senmuth releases I have yet heard, and the only truly good remixes EP to have been yet spawned by Valery Av and company.