Following on the heels of an appropriately eclectic EP of covers, Ill Nino’s 2008 effort ENIGMA offers more of the quintet’s quirky brand of melodically driving thrash. On its Cement Garden debut (fourth full-length overall) the New Jersey metal act sounds like Sepultura channeled through Faith No More, suddenly shifting languages or time signatures for a deliriously unpredictable ride. ENIGMA opens simply enough, summoning images of early Metallica on tracks like “The Alibi of Tyrants” and “Pieces of the Sun.” However, the record swiftly becomes gleefully unhinged and by “Guerilla Carnival,” the band is even interpolating INXS. When paired with the album’s graver lyrics, the effect is unsettling.
AllMusic Review by Jason Thurston