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[pullquote align=”normal” cite=”From press-release by Neurot Recordings”]In Amenra’s case it’s extremely tempting to use every superlative in the book, but in the vein of the attitude that is pouring out of the band’s every pore, here’s to keeping it modest. Amenra have been paving their own headstrong way in the 12 years since their inception, from overlooked releases and poorly attended show to critically acclaimed albums, sold out shows and the utmost respect of their listeners, peers and even heroes. Always putting heart and soul into every note, word and image and changing the course of people’s lives everywhere their path leads them[/pullquote]

One of my big regrets of recent years involve having to leave Copenhell 2014 early on the night Amenra was set to play a late night set. It was a bummer, but could not be helped.  So it goes. Which of course only makes it sweeter that Roadburn 2016 will feature two sets from one of the best post metal acts around.

Amenra from Belgium are among a select group of bands, whose vision seems so clear and concise, you can almost literally cut yourself from just listening to them. And as they progress as a band, they simply get better and better expressing that vision, creating some of the most painfully emotional music on the post-metal scene.

Debut album Mass I was a vitriolic dose of post-hardcore/post-punk. While at times sounding like the perfect blend of early Neurosis and Sonic Youth they also venture into the realm of jazzy avantgarde, all in the span of 26 minutes.

From Mass II onward, they leave the in-your-face anger of the debut behind, venturing instead into more of a post-metal style, getting all the more emotional and introspective, and continually more focused. Mass III and Mass IIII further enhancing the feel, that Amenra is a dark, brooding machine, a horror-story of a mirror through which to watch society and life in a lot more “real” sense, than what our everyday-senses usually tell us things look like.

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And again with Mass V they both build upon the hypnotic foundation, and develop both sound and thematics, appearing to never lose sight of the overall plan. The ritual is both saved… and quite intense. There is both contemplaton and abandon in one exquisite package.

Wedged in between IIII and V, the Afterlife acoustic EP is something altogether different, but again fully fitting into what Amenra is all about. With an overall theme of loss – but seen from the perspective of the one “leaving” – it’s a sobering experience, and quite different in both style and approach, if not in vision. Really clever and well-done, yet totally heart-wrenching, with half the EP made out of the first 3 tracks somehow played backwards. Artistically both refreshing and stimulating. And one of those albums to put on when you’re feeling really low.

Which of course makes it so much more fantastic that Amenra will be playing both an acoustic set and an electrified set on Roadburn 2016. I’m pretty certain it will be a mindblowing experience. And I can’t think of a better band to directly support Neurosis on this bill.

[pullquote align=”normal” cite=”To Go On.: And Live With. Out. – From the Afterlife EP”]To my child

For your eyes alone / All these years now gone

A love so real / Never dies at all / And what i feel / Will not fade away

To my child / Carry on

For your eyes alone / A life long and now gone

And all I ever wanted was to hold / You the forgotten way every day / I now belong to heaven, / I could not stay there with you

In a world without salvation / You will pain your way / In my world my salvation / My scream bares your name / All glory no shame

Rest assured that my wings / Can carry you too / Rest assured / That my wings they will carry you / To where ever you want to go [/pullquote]

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Amenra will be playing an acoustic set, with an expanded band of musicians, immediately before Neurosis, on the Saturday (April 16), and again will take to the main stage on Sunday night (April 17) to play an electric set.


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Mass ILP (2003)spotifyYoutube
Mass II: SermonsLP (2005)spotifyYoutube
Mass IIILP (2005)spotifyYoutube
Mass IIIILP (2008)spotifyYoutube
AfterlifeEP (2009)spotifyYoutube
Mass VLP (2012)spotifyBandCampYoutube