Listen: ENO – “From the Lower Earth and Ocean”

On the western wall of my room, near the window, hangs a piece of paper with on it a note titled “Summer’s Reading List”, featuring some pieces of literature that I want to read or re-read during the coming months. Among these titles is The Kalevala, a Finnish work of epic poetry that was compiled by Elias Lönnrot from Finnish and Karelian oral folklore and mythology. I discovered the book through the music of Amorphis, about four years ago, and I reached Rune XXXVIII, almost finishing the book. However, after the scene from “Silver Bride”, I was engulfed in other matters and I forgot about the book. This summer I’d like to re-read the Kalevala and finish it for good, so it was a surprise to stumble across a Swiss post-rock duo named ENO, who recently released an album inspired by this epic.

For their third album “From the Lower Earth and Ocean”, ENO chose to let themselves be inspired by Rune XLVII, a particularly dramatic song cycle that describes the witch-queen Louhi stealing the moon and the sun, as well as the fire from the houses of the people in Kalevala. All of the seven song titles are lines taken from this rune, and two songs extensively feature the text in spoken word passages.

With this album, ENO created a wonderful piece of ambient post-rock that listens like a soft pillow. “Night was King and Reigned Unbroken” is a carefully crafted introduction to the album, that sounds surprisingly coherent. It’s an album which emerges you, and wraps around you like a warm blanket.

“From the Lower Earth and Ocean” was released on May 22 by Ikarus Records. It comes as a digital download as well as a double LP severely limited to 250 copies. Be quick to order your copy!
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