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 Dark Endless - Dark End Times (my thoughts & share yours

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dOOm&gLOOm
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Registration date : 2007-01-23

PostSubject: Dark Endless - Dark End Times (my thoughts & share yours   Mon Jul 23, 2007 10:38 am

Hey guys, I posted this on the CMR last week and I knew there are some people here who listen to this stuff so I thought I'd copy and paste it here.

I've been listening to this EP a lot lately so I wrote up this review. Most of it's stream of consciousness Friggin' Morons! very rough language wise, but let me know what you think! And share your own thoughts on the MCD.







DARK ENDLESS - Dark End Times
----------------------------------
Dark
Endless. Dark End Times. By a completely obscure musician named
Darkend, who refuses to reveal his identity and of whom only one
picture is taken ... an obscured black and white face shot that
probably doesn't look anything like the actual dood. Limited to 300
copies. Logo is very American in nature-- completely indecypherable
oval shaped mess of spiney symmetrical wires that reminds one of Kreig,
Xasthur, or Leviathan. In short, Darkend's vision starts off generic as
hell before we even get to the music ... but I came to find this is all
part of the album's mystique.

I had this EP for a while before I
really started to appreciate it. At first I wrote it off as a
Marduk/Dark Funeral clone. This was a mistake. I remember one day I was
listening to some Antaeus and thumbing through my collection searching
for the next album I'd listen to. I came across this one and decided to
humor myself.

I put it in and came to realize the diversity of
sound present on this album. This is black metal the way it is supposed
to be done. Tight, inspired musicianship, sincerety in the vocal
department, and an obvious tip of the hat to some awesome influences.

Stylistically
this is very much in the vein of the more recent, post millenial black
metal wave. Noisy and fast dissonance in the vein of Antaeus or Funeral
Mist. The most obvious influence present is a healthy dose of
Clandestine Blaze worship (another band you should all be listening
to). However it ranges (even within songs) from this type of modern
black metal fury to more intimate melodic parts to some crushingly
heavy down-tempo changeover sections (astonishingly effective in this
context, yet you will miss them if you aren't careful). Also found here
and there are some stunningly effective black-thrash styled riffs that
keep the music from becoming overly emotional.

There is so much
MUSIC mashed together on this on short EP. Every song has it's own
personality; contained herein are an array of different song
structures, riff ideas, and the general movement of the music is always
cared for above any sappy desire to sound emotional or tortured for too
long.

Allow me to dissect Darkend's sound a little bit for you:

The
guitars have true shape to their tone-- They are not standard
tinny-thin bedroom black metal fare, but they are not overproduced
glitzy sparkling clear either. They are very raw but the low end
grounds them in the rest of the music, helping the music come together
very well and sound full. I especially like the variation in riff
types-- the dual guitars are played exceptionally well, riffs ranging
from fast black-thrash style riffs to more Norwegian-inspired cold
melody to more Swede-styled melodic chaos. As mentioned above, there
are even some slower, heavier riffs present here and there. A few more
spatial passages also made the cut into some of these songs ... though
they are not ambient in nature, the mellower side of Darkend's music
provides a break in the action and adds to the listenability of the
album.

Also characteristic of this release is that the bass is
100% audible throughout the whole thing. In much of extreme metal, this
bass prominence would mean that the guitars lack balls, but this is not
the case here. Additionally, there are some bass-only spots here and
there, or spots where the bass is completely separated from the rest of
the music, such as in the middle of Night Whispers Blood or the
beginning of Silent Enigma. The role of the bass in this music is most
effective, however, during the more Transylvanian Hunger-esque
sections, where Darkend's compositional skills really shine. Like I
said, this is raw but it is NOT bedroom black metal-- it is highly
accomplished and masterfully executed.

The drums are forefront
in the mix but not overbearingly so. Like the guitars, the drums are
raw in nature but there is plenty of low end to be had. The drumming in
general, but especially in the snare, I notice, sounds hollow and
almost cavernous. Again, this release is a surprisingly good balance
between the essential rawness and effective production. Technically
speaking, the drumming is extremely precise and obviously not
triggered, two things that are essential for Darkend's this
modern-styled black metal sound.

Hands down the thing that puts
this little MCD over the top though are the vocals. There are spots on
the album where Darkend simply shreiks for effect ... and he does so
surprisingly effectively. The beginning of Darkend Skies is a prime
example of this.

Lastly, and most importantly, this music is
real black metal. There are no keyboards. No female vocals. No clean
singing. This black metal is effective for what it is and the emotion
of the music is conveyed perfectly through traditional methods.
Darkend's vision is personalized and unique, but also focused and true
to the scene.

Like I hinted at in the beginning, this album is
deliberately generic right down to the grayscaled grim reaper artwork,
song titles, and the fact that no lyrics are included with the release.
In many cases this could be viewed as negative but in this case it
simply comes across as the pure essence of black metal expressed for 25
minutes without interruption. It is stunningly perceptive; it is
expressive yet never over the top.

Quality-wise this project is
on par with some of the "new classics" of the genre-- Katharsis,
Clandestine Blaze, Deathspell Omega, etc. I cannot really sing this
EP's praises any higher. I am an elitist black metal fanatic; I listen
to secular black metal every day. Take it from someone who knows--
Christian or not, this release is AWESOME.

I have heard that
this is supposed to be a one-album affair ... truly, I hope that is not
the case. This is absolutely the best Christian black metal release,
period.

10/10
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metalken
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PostSubject: Re: Dark Endless - Dark End Times (my thoughts & share yours   Mon Jul 23, 2007 11:07 pm

dOOm&gLOOm wrote:


I have heard that
this is supposed to be a one-album affair ... truly, I hope that is not
the case. This is absolutely the best Christian black metal release,
period.

10/10

Sadly, this is the case. Darkend has said repeatedly that this was it.

I do agree that this release is frigging' insane black metal, the intensity just pours from the music and performance. Top notch. I had a burn directly from Darkend for close to half a year before Bombworks brought it out. And then I purchased it from them.

Did you notice that mastering was done by Derek From, a.k.a. dharok from Sympathy?

On a side note, Joshua Croft who did the artwork and layout for Dark End Times also did the work on the Tortured Conscience's "Every Knee..." release for Bombworks.
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