Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
Elend - Les Ténèbres du Dehors CD (album) cover



Crossover Prog

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Bookmark and Share
3 stars I am almost speechless............ Almost !

Elend is back with their second album. An album that smashed all genres and ripped up the ABC of music, as understood by the metal scene. Yes, this album was released as a no-costs-spared digi pack by Holy Records and I was one of them buying it. Layout and art wise, this album is a truly great album. Everything Holy Records released back in those days were great and it was without doubts the best record label at that time. They still are one of the most interesting record labels in the world.

But what comes out of the speakers almost defies belief. Elend has been described as a neo-folk band (and Elene has been compared to Arcana) by both Amazon and someone in the metal scene. This label has stucked and it is a totally wrong label.

The music that streams out of my speakers and has prompted my workmates to close their doors to our fellow corridor is probably neo-classical or even neo-gothic. Not as in goth metal, but as in gothic classical music. There is not even a faint hint of metal here and this music has nothing whatsoever in common with rock and jazz too. This is very much music in Richard Wagner's landscape.

The music is entirely based on acoustic instruments used in classical orchestras. On the top of that, you have a lot of female opera vocals and some screaming, tortured dissonant male vocals. The latter one creates a very mentally disturbed/twisted picture of the music. A tortured soul, no less. Besides of this dissonance, the music is quite beautiful. In particular when underlined by these female opera vocals.

When overcoming the shock, the outline of some really good music appears. There is no truly great music here. But the quality is good. I understand where Elend is going here. The tortured male vocals is too disturbing to really enjoy this album to it's full. Or maybe these vocals is the strength of this album. But I still rate this album as a good album and will keep my options open to get a more positive view on this album in the coming years and decades.

3 stars

Report this review (#453873)
Posted Monday, May 30, 2011 | Review Permalink
3 stars 3.5 for sure

Elend from France at the time they released their second album in 1996 named Les Ténèbres du Dehors was one of the most unique and original bands in the music bussines. I remeber buying this album exactly when came out because of the excellent cover art (simply stunning)and because it was digi pack format , issued at Holy Records, knowing nothing about their music or previous album, only reading here and there that they were great and highly acclaimed world wide. Formed around 1993 by an austrian classical trained musician Renaud Tschirner and french multi instrumentalist Iskandar Hasnawi , Elend manage to gather lots of aplauses from fans in a short time. So, when I put the CD , I was blocked, I never though that they were sounding so dark, so unmetal. The music is realy literaly symphonic music, like it was in the XIX century, specialy german school as previous reviewer observe perfectly, Richard Wagner comes in mind here. The arrangements are based on string and acustical instruments with some harsh vocal parts from male side and some operatic parts from female, combined is a truly something worth investigated, Is like an orchestra playing dark medieval music. No trace of metal here, or other elemnts that remind me of this style, is pure symphonic and realy complex aswell. The album alterantes from beautiful , melancolic lanscapes to a more rough moments, when all the instruments involved realy done some fantastic parts. The horrifying and sadness of the music has no limits here. Very well played album, complicated music, not easy to digest at first or second spining, for this album is needed time to discover all the shining moments that are hidded under the surface.. And from that year 1996 , this album remain my fav Elend album, and one that I realy appreciate when I want to hear something dark with beautiful symphonic music like it was done almost 200 years before.3.5 for this album, recommened, but the listners must becareful, because is not an every day music and some of the listners might throw this album without reason if they don't dig very well the excellent parts offered here.

Report this review (#564600)
Posted Wednesday, November 9, 2011 | Review Permalink
2 stars The second album by Elend is essentially a somewhat more polished take on the first. The same general approach applies here - melancholy neoclassical darkwave music with the "classical" part of that genre's mix of influences cranked up to 11, with the occasional outbreak of sinister roars upstaging the clean vocals and trying to add a sort of spooky, scary ambience to proceedings. And like the previous album, it just doesn't quite come together for me, though comes closer to doing so than the debut did. Yes, it's quite well produced, with the keyboards emulating an orchestra really quite effectively, and there's some pretty moments, but it's also deeply unmemorable.

You could almost forgive it were it going for a more ambient approach, but that seems rather incompatible with the death growls that litter the album. Worse, whenever the growling starts the effect is not foreboding but simply a little comical, rather undermining the intended atmosphere of the compositions. The end result is an album where I am rather more sure that Elend know what they are doing than the somewhat muddled debut - but where I am even more convinced that I'm not especially interested in what they are doing.

Report this review (#1640149)
Posted Monday, November 7, 2016 | Review Permalink

ELEND Les Ténèbres du Dehors ratings only

chronological order | showing rating only

Post a review of ELEND Les Ténèbres du Dehors

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.