Initially formed in 2007, it may have taken a while Eleanora to get things going, but their 2014 releases proved that they belong to the great Belgian post-metal/hardcore/sludge scene. It is no coincidence that their first release was a split with fellow Belgian legends Amenra, and that it was in turn followed by their self-titled EP, revealing a very promising concept. Since it looks like things are really clicking for them now, they return today, two years after the release of the split and EP, with their debut album, Allure, in an effort to solidify their post-hardcore/doom/sludge identity.
The foundation of their style is heavily based on the doom metal field, and by extension has a sludge quality. Heavy riffs are rain down constantly in the album, with Eleanora establishing that setting through this work. The weight of “My Sceptre Sword of Vengeance” sets that mentality going, but it is not done in a single, unchanging way. The groove of the genre soon enough kicks in, especially with “Sovereign In Mind Subjected In Kind,” with the band masterfully navigating the sludge domain, and surprisingly enough, finding a way to fit in a touch of a stoner tone as well. In a more destructive manner, however, they can drop the pace, resulting in a more tormenting offering in “Menis,” or in a ritualistic scenery in “Telos.”
It is quite a trademark of the Belgian scene to infuse their doom/sludge weight with structures that tend to be found in post-metal, as well as enhancing the emotional aspect of their work with such melodies. Alongside the heavy riffs of “My Sceptre Sword of Vengeance” the band makes sure to compliment the distorted guitars with melodic lines, creating a more imposing manifestation. That mellow side is also apparent in the beginning of “Sovereign In Mind Subjected In Kind,” striking a more subtle chord with their sonic explorations, and also acquiring a progression, similar to the ones found in the works of post-metal artists.
Label: Consouling Sounds
Still, what separates Eleanora from the style of groups such as Amenra is the extent to which they will go in terms of their hardcore sound. Hardcore roots and post-hardcore methodologies are all lost together in Allure, with Eleanora putting on different façades, dependant on the mood of the certain moment. There are times when the screamo side of the band surfaces, with full-on cut-throat vocals tearing through the music, combining perfectly with the more melodic element, originating from post-metal works. But, there are also darker moments, when an even harsher approach manifests, the band travelling to blackened hardcore areas, as is the case with both “My Sceptre Sword of Vengeance” and “Telos,” bringing absolute mayhem in a frenzy of blastbeats.
Eleanora have introduced themselves already with their split and EP, but it is their debut album that gives as a proper insight on the band’s concepts. There is a certain raw element about Allure, but the band does great in balancing that with a sense of continuity in the record. It ends up being an excellent first step, and a promise that more will soon come.