Eths- III

By Chris Dahlberg

Published on Monday, December 31, 2012

France’s Eths is a group that I was unfamiliar with, but after looking into them it seems as though their mix of groove metal and alternative metal is quite popular in their home country. The band released their newest album III earlier in the year, and it represents a shift from the earlier sound to a metalcore influenced style. At the same time Eths has still managed to maintain some elements that keep them from sounding too stereotypical, and if you’re open to some slightly more mainstream leaning styles there are plenty of catchy hooks to be found on this effort.

I’m not completely familiar with the band’s first two albums outside of a few songs here and there, but III seems to represent a fairly significant shift in sound for Eths. The earlier material I heard was very focused on down-tuned guitars that had a crunchy nu-metal feel to the riffs, and while some of those influences are still present this time around but the tonality has changed and the heavier riffs remind me more of metalcore mixed with hard rock. In addition to this, there is a larger emphasis and samples and melodies which the band is able to use on certain tracks in order to make their hooks even stronger. Compared to others in this genre, Eths is able to maintain a decent amount of variety and while the chugging riffs at the base of their material doesn’t change that often the elements that are added over top of them make a difference. The final two tracks, which consist of a one and a half minute instrumental and then a lengthy closing song, stretch on for a bit too long but the strength of the rest of the material does help to make up for it.

Vocalist Candice Clot has quite a bit of depth to her performance, as she switches between blood curdling screams and mellow clean singing from one moment to the next. This type of style is a bit of an acquired taste, as the two styles are polar opposites and require that listeners truly enjoy both to get the most out of Eths’ music. The screams are fairly high pitched and often dominate the material, but Clot’s clean singing is what stood out to me as it has the kind of energy and depth that could provide some mainstream recognition. Overall, while I’m not usually crazy about this particular vocal mix it worked on III and kept me returning.

Listeners that enjoy nu-metal edged metalcore that also offers some mainstream hard rock style hooks from time to time will want to check out the latest effort from Eths, as it has plenty of noteworthy moments. Since the release of the album Candice Clot has left the group, but while she may have been the face of the band for so many years the instrumentals on III are strong enough to lead me to believe that they will be able to continue. In the meantime though, at least the band has another worthy release in their catalog.

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