I would like to start this off by saying that I am not qualified to properly review this album. I would rate my knowledge of punk rock as strong to very strong, depending on the time period and geographical location. With the exception of late 80s/early 90s hip-hop, I am remarkably ignorant of any other type of music. This release is about as punk rock as Phantom of the Opera, so I will be winging it, or “bullshitting”.
Ilium are a heavy metal band. Now, as many of you know, there are essentially two types of metal. There’s the kind where you can read the font, and the kind where you can’t. Well, you can read Ilium’s. It’s written plain as day on a flying dagger with a gargoyle perched atop the handle. These guys go beyond just having a decipherable font though.
This is a special subgenre of metal for dudes who shop at that weird store at the mall where you can buy a sword. Their Bandcamp page describes them as “symphonic metal”, which sounds appropriate as it has all the drama and flamboyance of a highly choreographed Broadway production. To be clear, I’m not bagging on them. These guys are masters (or wizards) of their craft. I’m sure this isn’t what they (or any other metal band ever) were going for, but this EP is fun. It’s a lot more fun than the kind of metal with cookie monster vocals where you don’t even know what the band is called because their name is just a bunch of menacing scribbles.
One of their previous releases is called “Enviro Metal”, and appears to be comprised of songs about caring for planet Earth. The cover art depicts a peaceful intergalactic Serengeti plain. I think the genre could use more of that. You never see heavy metal artwork where the landscape is properly cared for. It’s always like, this used to be a city, but now it’s been destroyed and this corpse in the foreground is laughing at me.
I’m only guessing here, but my assumption is that this type of metal is not fashionable, and that Ilium are complete dorks. Great! They’re a lot cooler than some Burzum worshiping wannabe viking motherfucker with sketchy politics. This EP is ridiculous and crazy, and I love it.
The term ilium comes from the final segment of the small intestine, which is appropriate because these guys are really working on some new shit. Give it a listen, regardless of what you’re into. It’s fun, the way metal should be.