Review in Allmusic
Having fulfilled their original ambition to transpose the Roman Catholic 'Leçons de Ténèbres' masses into music on their first three albums, Austrian/French trio Elend embarked on a five- year hiatus before resuming their sonic explorations with 2003's Winds Devouring Men. Once again based on a pre-existing work (in this case a French poem), Winds Devouring Men is a highly complex, deeply evocative work meshing melancholy, ethereal orchestral arrangements with occasional bursts of dramatic bombast, many of which are denoted by unexpected incursions into industrial music. Soothing male vocals sung in English set the patient, relaxed pace, and a supporting cast of piano, strings, horns, chorales, and the occasional female soprano accompany the group's core trio in creating a diverse, but clearly unified composition over these ten tracks. The final result is quite simply mesmerizing, and not even the title track's surprising flirtation with dissonant 'musique concrete' can detract from this truly accomplished and stunning release.
reviewed by Ed Rivadavia