Entropia – Ufonaut (2016)

Of the several acts with the name Entropia out there, (I found about seven on Metal Archives) this Polish five-piece creates a style of music that is considered “black/sludge/post” even though I’d certainly throw in experimental and electronic. With the exception of guitarist Kuba Colta, these guys have been together since the very beginnings back in 2007. Most interestingly about the band is their use of both a keyboardist (Damian Dudek) as well as a sampler (Michal Dziedzic) that makes for a pretty interesting mix of progressive sludge riffs and slightly spacial electronic elements. Sometimes the bass (Marek Cenkar) and strong drumming (Patryk Budzowski) can completely drown out the electronic elements, but that’s to be expected with a sound as thick as the one I’m witnessing here. Entropia utilize vocals (Cenkar and Dziedzic) but they’re often not necessary as this is the kind of record that is so textually superior that it doesn’t even need working verses or a chorus. Ufonaut is an experiment in the very sense of the word, it is an atmosphere and it draws you in fairly quickly from it’s out of the box and rather bizarre approach to something that I can’t even call black metal. Other than Budzowski’s occasional use of blast beats, there’s very little here that I can even consider to be black metal – at all. I mean, if you’re hearing black metal in some areas, that’s fine; but I feel that with this release the act have become something far more than just black metal. There are very few acts that I just want to sit down and enjoy on a musical level like these gentlemen have delivered, and even if some of the leads and electronic bits have a rough time peering out from the thick sludge of it all, I still want to open my ears up to what I can discern as a rather potent and memorable sound. Why no one else really gave a damn about this one, I’ll never know. I guess there were other things going on in January, like best of lists and whatnot.

That being said, anyone who purchases this record is in for a trip. It might sound cruel that I could literally care less about the vocal or lyrical element of this album, but I just consider Cenkar’s screams to be part of the music and they don’t have any bearing on the rest of the performance. Even when these guys utilize djent riffs I don’t feel that I mind, because they’re actually using the riffs in a style that focuses on more than just those damn riffs. Again, I feel that these guys have a few mixing issues but it could very well be my laptop speakers and you might be able to discern other things on your first listen. Ufonaut is definitely the kind of listen that I’d want to experience more than once, and at forty-three minutes you’re not really devoting an awful lot of your time to it. Just don’t go expecting anything familiar in terms of classic black metal and you’ll be alright. I did hear some tremolos here and there and felt some nihilism in the vocals, but I wouldn’t compare this to anyone else out there in the black metal scene. With some exceptions, I still stand behind my earlier observations and feel that it is very hard to consider an act like Entropia to be black metal unless they’re trying very hard for that style. It’s a shame that this one had to wait for so long, but I mean to cover as many of the older releases that stood out as I can. It’s quite obvious that Entropia did and I’m really not in a hurry for them to release another one. They don’t really have anything else that they need to prove after this sophomore and I think you’ll agree that the material here on Ufonaut is good enough. Entropia are a good band and this a good album. That’s a pretty simplistic description, but the album itself is most certainly not. Please give it a listen and experience it for yourself. I really hope that this one isn’t too hard to find, considering that there are so many bands with similar monikers. Perhaps these Polish mad scientists will one day become the definitive version of that moniker, as this record definitely feels promising enough for them to do so.

(7 Tracks, 43:00)

8/10

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