Starting life under a different moniker, Stephen Trepak’s Annexia is the sound of movement, closure and despair. Trepak’s (also of Human Future) foray into doomed electronica takes steps towards black metal, sludge and post-metal all while encompassing an atmosphere that speaks of change and acceptance. Leaving behind the past is a huge upheaval, but on Egress, Annexia try to come to terms with the fact that that past cannot be changed and instead we must embrace it and move forwards. “An Introduction, Of Sorts,” welcomes the future on soft flowing and intricate horns that gently push for space between the rhythm and call to mind Ulver, in their latter incarnation – an inflection that is carried throughout the record and lends it an epic and melancholy cohesion.
“No Sympathy for the Wretched” travels a significantly more sludgy path, with vocals trawled through filth and damp and a soundscape that edges to the abyss and looks to its depths, while “Through Pain We Learn” marches on industrialised beats and pained vocals that are wrapped in misery and anger. The track shifts into lighter passages in its closing stages that echo with beauty and contrast sharply to the sounds that led it but the dangerous waves below soon overwhelm any semblance of peace. The climax is striking and the end but this is not the end.
“In Time, This Tide Too Will Break,” is a gorgeous, and devastatingly sad ending to a record that feels all to necessary to its creator. Annexia have self-released Egress previously, but the timing for this disparate and desperate composition is absolutely right – for both the band and for its prospective audience. Humanity is heading for destruction and Annexia is the discordant soundtrack.
You can hear Egress now and you can pre-order the cassette via Truthseeker Music.