hails from Portugal and was formed around 1996 and is currently comprised of members Carmen, Rune, Nor, Paulo and Hugo. While largely un-heard
of outside of parts of Europe, this band is extremely under-rated and under-promoted. They have had quite a few respectable reviews and concert appearances
with the likes of Garden of Delight
and Faith and the Muse
. They appeared at the M'era Luna festival in Germany and have since received a lot
of fame for that appearance. They've released a number of promotional EPs, but only one full-length album Revolutions
released on Symbiose
. They've since signed on with the Equilibrium
label for their national releases and have released their EP Never Fragile
They have also just signed with Middle Pillar Presents
for the release of their new album Sentient
in the United States.
Their outstanding sound is very familiar to This Ascension
and slightly reminiscent of some Faith and the Muse
tracks. With beautiful
female-fronted vocals and an excellent band to back it all up, the music of their Never Fragile EP
is guaranteed to please fans of the Ethereal Gothic Rock
genre, yet their other two albums is more ethereal and laid back in nature. Be sure to check out tracks on both the Club mix and Ethereal mix radio shows.
Sentient - Review
After their mind-blowing EP, I was very excited to hear about the release of this album on Middle Pillar
. I wasn't familiar with their debut, so I
was expecting more of the upbeat music that we heard on their EP.
However, I was pleasantly
surprised to hear something different, but something great in the form of excellent Ethereal and Neo-classical music!
This disc is a dreamy soundscape beyond decent explanation. The creativity and beauty in the music carry each piece to a new level of serenity. But
it's not without majesty and power at the same time amidst the swirl of dreamy, ethereal bliss. In fact, the album starts off with "Lilith" which is one of
the more relaxed tracks from their Never Fragile
EP. Yet on this album this first track is actually one of the more upbeat tracks with the percussion
and excellent mix of guitar, bass and powerful vocals.
After this first track, the rest of the disc drifts into a dream-like state of slow beats and somewhat melancholy, but uplifting music at the same time.
Each track could be named as an example of this unique and beautiful style from "Shelter for a Lesser God" with it's slightly minor key to the more uplifting
"Old Europa" and "Pale". Each song is a masterpiece and stunning work.
It's really hard for me to pick favorite tracks on here, each has a fairly homogenous sound, each blending well with the next or previous, and nothing really
stands out too much except for the first song "Lilith" and "Eclipse" which also has quite a bit of an edge to it, with driving percussion and grinding guitars
that breaks the mold slightly from the rest of the album. And the entire work is wrapped up with the most dreamy of ethereal works in the form of the
rapturesque "Song to a Moonlit Mermaid". This ambient dreamscape teases you with sounds of water running or rain falling, very light music and just an
overall very dreamy atmosphere. A perfect ending for this beautiful work.
If you enjoyed their first album and enjoy beautiful Ethereal and Neo-Classical music, I really think you'll love this work. Fans of Black Tape for a
and Dark Sanctuary
are the most likely to enjoy.
May 25, 2003 - Interview
GP: Why did you choose the name Aenima? What does it mean and is that meaning linked to the reason you chose it?
Rune: Anima is the Latin word for soul. We thought it would fit with the spirit of the band; we wanted to take our music out of the boundaries
of reason and into the innermost depths of the soul. A Latin name always seemed right, its close to our native language and yet its antiquity makes it
almost universal. The Ae prefix is symbolic for ether, and it was used to mirror what we interpreted as the ethereality of our music.
GP: Tell me a little bit about how the band has progressed from being formed originally. Was it just formed by Rune and Carmen and then added on from
there? Were you working on other projects before Aenima?
Rune: Yes, it was just me and Carmen. It began as a studio project, we just thought there were so many interesting things going on previous to that in the
city where we live, and nothing really had any impact outside, and that we could change that with our experience. I was working with something we called a
prog-art-goth band, which was Millennium, which got to tour a while, but never really amounted to anything important, and Carmen played bass and did backing
vocals with Goth-rockers Poetry of Shadows and sang with heavenly voices outfit Isiphilon, whose Essence album still sounds great these days.
GP: What do you enjoy doing "behind the music"? In other words, what are your hobbies, jobs, pastimes, etc.? Tell us a little bit about you besides
what we learn from your music and lyrics.
Rune: We are all very focused and workaholic individuals, and most of the time were occupied either by the band or by our daytime jobs, mostly in
equal parts. We all enjoy traveling, reading and listening to music; those would be the bonding hobbies. Carmen used to draw and paint, but she hasnt been
active there these last few years. Im pretty much into photography, Paulo into computer games, and Pedro is hardly doing anything besides music these
GP: Let's talk a little bit about your musical style. I'm not familiar with your debut, but your Never Fragile EP seemed to have a little bit more
of an edge, almost like a Gothic Rock influence, possibly comparable to This Ascension. But the new album is much softer and more ethereal, why the
change in direction and will this continue or do you think you might include more rock-sounding songs (like "The Light")?
Rune: Its not actually a change of direction. Our debut album was a very ethereal, conceptual piece and Sentient picks up on the same mood,
while being somewhat more mature and with an intimate feel. Never Fragile was a deliberate departure, exactly because we wanted to get our punchier
material together, and make it have some sense. Being an EP, we were freer not to care that much about it as a piece as we must for an entire album
it was a
collection of songs. In the future, you can expect anything, really
the only constant factors in what we do is the desire to experiment and the eagerness to
put out really emotional music. You could say that melancholy is also an integral part of our work, but all the other aspects of our work may well vary. We are,
for example, planning to integrate some classical elements throughout our next work, but that is still just thought in progress
GP: Speaking of musical styles and influences, where would you say your biggest influence comes from? Any particular band or music you listen to that
brings these styles out?
Rune: We are pretty diversified in our tastes, and each one of us listens to a huge variety of stuff, so Id say its impossible to answer that
question with some coherence
we try to make out pictures or feeling of what were trying to achieve with a piece, and then try to make it happen
musically, with all of us giving input.
I think that the heaviest influence, which will become unconscious, but you may never escape, is what you listen to as a child
that is probably what allows
for further connections to be made. I listen to gamelan music from Bali, and whilst I find it challenging, I cannot relate to that system, and it would take me a
few years to strip from my set of preconceptions and get into a new one
as adults we usually avoid the bother
GP: You released your Never Fragile EP with Equilibrium Music, will you continue a relationship with this label for European releases even though you're signed
with the American label Middle Pillar?
Rune: The relationship will continue within Portugal, as long as it makes sense for both parties involved. In the rest of Europe, distribution will be
taken care of by Nova Media and Audioglobe, and we are very happy to be working with such high-profile companies, and hope it will be a profitable
GP: How do you feel so far about your relationship with Middle Pillar?
Rune: It has opened numerous doors which were inaccessible for us in the past, and, most important of all, its a label that has a roster of artists
in which I personally believe, and which I believe may grow together
no matter how distant we are, we get a feeling of being part of the Middle Pillar
family, and theres a great vibe over there.
We are still weary of the huge geographical gap between us; with they promoting mainly on the U.S and us having our concert-base mainly in Europe its
still early to tell how if its working out well or not on that department.
GP: Are there certain goals that you hope to accomplish because of this signing?
Rune: Definitely. Reaching the states is an important goal; we never were able to get any real exposure there. We are hoping that if and when interest in this ethereal type of music starts to grow Middle Pillar and Projekt will be on the forefront of it and we benefit from being there.
GP: How do you feel about your Never Fragile EP?
Rune: As I told you, we were never as worried about Never Fragile as wed be about a full length release. We were somewhat freer and tongue-in-cheek about it. It does not hold the type of material that we feel happier with listening to, but its awesome to play Rapture or At the Edge of a Cliff live. The feedback has been excellent; I think well always be looking back on it as a release that everyone else loves way more than ourselves will.
GP: And how do you feel about your new album?
Rune: We are extremely proud of it. It holds as a very beautiful one-hour of music which at the time it was recorded represented exactly that which we wanted to express. Im sure well look back on it and see all types of imperfections, but for the time being it still seems absolutely fabulous. Generally speaking, I think it is a very original and potentially classic work.
GP: What are your immediate and future plans? Will we see you perform in the states soon?
Rune: Were starting the planning phase for both our next album and a series of concerts, which may or may not happen, but I can tell you are a really fantastic idea. We just presented Sentient with a concert at the Lisbon planetarium, which featured a fantastic light show, absolute mobility of the band, the cosmic projections, and extra video and slide projections, and was a huge success. That gave us wings to fly higher and be more ambitious with our idea of giving unorthodox and memorable gigs. The states still seem a little bit far away, we still have absolutely no contacts with agencies over there, but that is bound to change having an American label.
12. Thanks again for your time, is there anything you would like to add for your fans to read?
Rune: Thank you Jacob for all the support throughout these last years, and we wish you best of luck with Gothic Paradise. We feel a strong link with all our fans throughout the world. We are very happy to have reached everybody we did, and thankful for the fact our souls are in sync. Thanks for reading, thanks for listening. Peace.?
Be sure to check out more interviews and information on their web site.
Label: Equilibrium Music