Hailing from Vilnius, Lithuania, Life’s Edge has consisted of Viktor Filimonenko (vocals), Modestas Juškėnas (guitar), Mindaugas Bitė (guitar), Marius Petniūnas (bass), Karolina Vikšraitytė (keyboards) and Augustinas Bėkšta (drums) since 2010.
‘The band’s sound is a strange synthesis between several metal styles and techniques’, ‘dark and agressive, but also melodic and sensitive’ (Last.fm)
The record is founded upon interplay between melancholy, melody, doom and death, with lashings of wistful and furious emotional elements artfully layered over the top in equal measure.
The EP opens with desolate soundscape ‘Light That Never Shines’, with melancholy keys and whispered vocals, building tension through bass and drums.
This building of tension continues into the second track ‘Impurity’ that mixes black metal inspired riffage with striking guitar solos and excellent interplay between tinkling cymbals, heavy riffs and electronic keys.
The mid-point of the EP ‘Our Drowned World’ works as an ode to angry-as-balls despair with blast-beat ridden sections breaking into spacious menacholic refrains and back again, with healthy doses of both growled and spoken vocals.
Title track, ‘Left In Despair’ continues very much in this vein breaking into relentlessly galloping sections between bouts of despair.
Closing track ‘Emptiness’ is truly a rollercoaster of emotion, without sticking to a particular style for more than a few bars, the track reflects the rest of the EP by exploring the feeling of despair in all its intricacy, with sections of tentative hope, sorrow, longing and anger to name a few umbrella terms.
Within the EP, the inteligent and varied use of interplay is what really stands out, the collaborations between different styles, instruments and techniques within the instruments, all of which is executed very well. The EP is extremely well produced, delicate and detailed in the light passages, clear and resonant in the heavy sections, complete with emotive artwork from Povilas Kalabukas.
All in all Left In Despair is a great effort making Life’s Edge one to watch as we wait with bated breath for a full length record!