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Insomniac Doze

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Sept. 12 2006)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: SCD / Temporary Residence
  • ASIN: B000H7ZZTC
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #222,949 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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1. Further Ahead Of The Warp
2. Shield Of Selflessness
3. Scene
4. Crystallize
5. The Unkown Glow
6. Night In Winter
7. A Warm Room

Product Description

In 1991, a group of Japanese teenagers formed an uncompromising thrash band, spitting two-minute blasts of indecipherable terror for anyone who could stand the physical and emotional damage it inflicted. Fifteen years later, punk's corpse has been cannibalized to the bone and Envy has irreparably blurred the lines dividing the various factions of hardcore. Still terrifyingly sincere, their songs are now life-affirming, triumphant portraits for anyone strong-willed enough to withstand the emotional epiphanies they inspire.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0xa3a1f7a4) out of 5 stars 5 reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa38793a8) out of 5 stars One of the Most Devastating and Beautiful Records You're Likely to Ever Hear. Sept. 12 2006
By M. Dyess - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
For over a decade, Envy has been creating and crossing their own boundaries in regards to what is possible within emotive hardcore. In 2001 with All the Footprints You've Ever Left..., they provided listeners with the chaos of Orchid and a certain melodic quality that would have previously seemed more suited for post rock or indie; all of this done with astonishing success. Building upon this unique quality was their 2003 release, A Dead Sinking Story, which found Envy at the highest artistic level of their career. Much of the chaos that had been present on their prior releases had been replaced by the more quiet and somber moments that began to surface on their previous record. This, of course, did not take away from the sheer emotion of the music, greatly heightened by Tetsuya Fukagawa's passionate vocal delivery. In fact, in many ways, the emotion was taken to new levels, which more than ever would lend itself to their most recent album, Insomniac Doze.

Though the path Envy would take for this album was rather clear to me, their signing to the Temporary Residence label basically set it into stone, which in turn set my expectation level on overdrive. Home to bands like Explosions In The Sky, Eluvium, and Mono, the label is a high-point for quality post rock and ambient music. Within the first ten seconds of "Further Ahead of Warp", it's very apparent what this album has in store for us. A single riff is allowed to ring as a second tremolo melody is repeated, already providing Envy's most epic melody of their career within the first minute of the song. Shortly thereafter, the melody breaks down into something more with soft drumming as Fukagawa's heavenly spoken-word vocals enter. Finally, within the second minute of the track, he begins the passionate and sorrowful screams I've grown to absolutely love over the past few years. Never, in any other genre of music, have I felt so much emotion from such a simple and monotonous scream; it goes without saying that I have no idea as to what Fukagawa is saying, as he provides vocals in nothing other than his native Japanese language. To be honest, though, it doesn't matter as much (or at all) as it usually would with nearly any other band. With one scream, vocal melody, or delicate spoken word, we're provided with an endless amount of emotion on various levels.

All of this is rolled into a single, nearly indescribable track called "Scene". Beginning with what seems to be a lost Explosions In The Sky melody and continued with more spoken word, the track explodes into a sea of cascading guitar melodies with the ever-so-light backdrop of a keyboard arrangement which, to be honest, sounds very much like a third guitar. This is, of course, not a bad thing and only adds to the depth of the track. This arrangement is repeated a couple of times throughout the track until finally, during it's last repetition, Fukagawa retreats from his mournful screams and let's the central melody speak for itself for the first and only time in the song. In doing this, Envy seem to be showing how very universal their music is and how very powerful it can be if left to stand on its own. As the track ends, I cannot help but feel like I've heard something unique and incomparable, even after what has to be my hundredth listen.

On a similar note, I think it's worth mentioning that the second track on this album, for the most part, seems to be a direct rehash of a large portion of "Chain Wondering Deeply", the first track on A Dead Sinking Story. Even more noteworthy is the fact that I had no knowledge of this until a friend mentioned it to me. It seems that only Envy could blatantly copy themselves and still seem completely fresh and original.

After the excellent "Crystallize" the album moves onto its most complete track - the fifteen minute "The Unknown Glow". The song takes a good three minutes to do anything more than generate a soft guitar melody. Being a complete song, it is still in no way the best song on the album. It is, however, an amazing track and should be mentioned if for no other reason than the three minute spoken word passage over a simple lone guitar melody in the middle of the song. I know of very few bands that could get away with something like that while holding my interest the entire time. Envy are one such band.

As the passage finally builds over a simple drum roll that seems to last nearly as long, the track explodes for a brief period and finally dies down giving way to the weakest or, more accurately, least amazing track on the album, "Night In Winter". After this, we are treated to Envy's greatest achievement, the gorgeous "A Warm Room", a fitting end to one of the most beautiful albums of this or any other year. For its entire seven minute running time the band plays what seems to be the same exact reverb-heavy notes. At times it seems as though there are five guitarists playing at once. It is so very ethereal at first, as the clean-picked tremolo melody continues for the first minute and a half, giving way to soft drumming and Fukagawa's almost obligatory spoken words. Shortly after, another layer of guitars is added as the drumming becomes more noticable. At just under three minutes the melody explodes from clean to distortion, the cymbals begin crashing in, and it feels as though the most amazing and angelic melody I've ever heard continues on for nearly an eternity. All the while, Fukagawa belts out the most mournful screams of the entire record.

As the album comes to a close, I'm generally left speechless and usually don't listen to anything else for a few hours. As it's probably evident, the word 'emotion' keeps coming up as I try my best to describe this album. It's really the one and only word that sums this record up on any level of explaination. Really, emotion defines us all and is the one thing that seperates us all at our core. By the same token, it also looks to be the only thing that keeps us together. I certainly do not know what Tetsuya Fukagawa had to say throughout this record, but I'm fairly confident that I know what he was feeling as he delivered the message. Envy have once again created a universe all their own, giving us a masterpiece of emotion and sound. Insomniac Doze is not only the best album of Envy's long career, but it is also one of the most devastating and beautiful records you're likely to ever hear.

--Matthew Dyess
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa38793fc) out of 5 stars Beautiful album full of emotion. Oct. 7 2006
By W. Koah - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
The sound on this is pretty much Post Rock styled music with spoken word vocals (like Mogwai) and emotional screaming. There is truly no band like these guys and this may just be their finest work. If you like bands like Mogwai, Godspeed You Black Emperor, and Explosions In The Sky, then you'll probably like these guys quite a bit.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa3879834) out of 5 stars The most beautiful album I own. Nov. 13 2009
By Marcus W. Heleker - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
First of all, I am a huge fan of envy. This is not my favorite album of theirs, but it is their most post-rock driven and has some of my favorite songs. I might prefer the album before this, A Dead Sinking Story, or the EP Abyssal, but that isn't to say anything against this album. When you have made several perfect albums, it becomes difficult to compare them fairly. I just like the aggression found in their older recordings. Realistically, you could grab anything they have made in the last 8 years and not be disappointed, in my opinion. If you are a fan of post rock or melodic screamo, or just a fan of music in general that is not too strongly put off by harsh vocals, give this album a listen and I am sure you will love it. I'd go into more detail, but there is already a great description in an earlier review.
HASH(0xa3879bf4) out of 5 stars A league of their own June 21 2009
By John P. Anderson - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I'll keep this short. I happened upon Envy on a compilation CD that was a freebie at an indie record store. I took a chance and tracked down Insomniac Doze. The album is beautiful and emotional. It weaves in and out like a classical composition. This is what Mogwai would sound like if they wanted to be heavy.
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa3879cd8) out of 5 stars brilliant Sept. 17 2006
By N. Omar - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I was initially drawn to the group after doing some websearches on 'emo' culture, believe it or not:). This is epic stuff. I particularly like track 4 ("crystallize"), a 10 minute anthem.

My only gripe is the poor lyric translation in the booklet, not much of the poetry is coherent in its current form. Any volunteers?