Although Manchester-based quartet Parting Gift have been in the scene for coming up to two years, it seems they’ve finally found their feet with their imminent release, Ensom. The EP comes after a solid start to 2019; signing to major label Fearless Records and touring with the likes of UK talent Blood Youth are just a few highlights the band can look proudly back upon.
Despite their debut single 'Be Still' opening the doorway into the hardcore scene that Parting Gift sit within, Ensom takes a more melodic approach, though this initially seems surprising, it soon becomes apparent that the quarter's leap into something cleaner pays them back in dividends. And Although this release only clocks in at around 20 minutes, it certainly packs a punch, and an emotional one at that.
Opener 'Pale' crashes in from the off, offering an angsty yet atmospheric vibe. Frontman Zac Vernon’s seamlessly effortless vocal range blends perfectly into the bands distinctive sound, offering an experience that’s ultimately beyond music. The remaining four tracks offer a noticeably softer tone, with lyrics that ooze sincerity and delicate layers of ambient sounds, they're almost picturesque in their nature. Single '3:07 (Moonlight)' is haunting yet passionate – Vernon’s vocals are undeniably incredible, certainly taking Ensom up a notch.
'Cold' and 'Without Sin' offer a melancholic aura, which travels into your most profound thoughts and feelings without any warning. The atmospheric layers to these singles portray the apparent and impressive maturity Parting Gifts tones; it’s hard to not become completely immersed in the sounds that these guys are making, despite their overwhelmingly bleak theme; the epitome of gloom, in it’s greatest sense.
The closing title track highlights the powerhouse of the EP, that is George Barne’s drumming – smashing through almost five minutes of utter angst and anguish. Vernon’s lyrics play an equally important part, absolutely nailing each note.
Nihilistic and gloomy yet overwhelmingly moving, Ensom is an enigmatic outpour of melancholic angst; It offers a sound that is not defined by genre, but one that many genres would welcome with open arms.