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Endlesshade - Wolf Will Swallow the Sun

Endlesshade
Wolf Will Swallow the Sun
by Danny Sanderson at 03 April 2015, 5:39 PM

When it comes to Extreme Metal, especially that of the Blackened variety, Ukraine has a track record for producing great bands. From the likes of Black Metal greats like DRUDKH and HATE FOREST, headed by Black Metal maestro and general musical genius Roman Saenko, to the uplifting Power Metal of CONQUEST and the Folk-tinged anthems of CHUR, Ukraine is a nation that has a strong pedigree of solid Metal bands producing equally solid music. One such Ukrainian band that does this quite well is ENDLESSHADE, and their new album, "Wolf Will Swallow the Sun", is a prime example of their talents.

The track that this album begins with, "Post Mortem", opens on a cool piano piece, backed with a heavy atmosphere that helps to build up the track. Then the track burst into life, set to really cool guitar lines and the brilliant, haunting vocals of Natalia. It's definitely got a lot of Extreme Metal elements to it, but the really interesting part of this music is the atmosphere and sounds added to the mix by Olga Bedash on Keyboards. "7" is very much in the same vein, with a slight air of ambience and gothic touches that really make the song work well. It very gradually becomes bigger, and more instruments come in, rather than trying to go straight for the jugular with an over the top, ridiculously heavy tune. When the heavy part comes though, it is amazing; it's essentially a very Death/Doom based affair, with some brilliant melodic and clean guitar parts and punishing vocals, all backed by the slow dirge of the drums. Just before the end, though, comes a really powerful, almost Black Metal section that sounds really awesome. This is by far and away, one of the better songs on this album. The third, title track is fairly good, and continues to use the guitars to provide plenty of great hooks, both vocally, on guitar, and on the keyboards, to make it a great song. It definitely ups the ante in the aggression stakes, and this is a much heavier track than the two that came before it, with much more discordant, dissonant keyboard sections and far more emphasis on the growled vocals than the clean. This doesn't mean that the song doesn't have its softer moments. About half way through the track, and just before the end, there are two much calmer pieces thrown in, and these are essentially the eye of the storm rather than a complete change of direction musically. "Noctambulism" is another brilliant anthem that doesn't sit well in any single subgenre. It's got elements of everything from Death Metal through to Post Metal and Ambient, with plenty of melodic and atmospheric flourishes peppering the varied sound for good measure. We also get to see the full extent of Natalia's vocal range during this track, and it's clear that she is a very talented vocalist. The song calms down in the final moments, which leads us perfectly into the eerie, foreboding and grim sounding "Edge". This is another track that slowly builds momentum, and it certainly is one of the darker songs on this already dark album. At various points, this song has some genuinely hair-raising riffs and arrangements. It ebbs and flows through varying levels of heaviness, and stands alongside "7" as the stand out track on this record. The sixth, longest and final song, "Truth Untold", follows the same path as the others; it starts off on a much more mellow pace and sound, gets heavier, and has a very strong, layered and well thought out musical arrangement. Like all the songs on here, although it sticks to the formula the band have set themselves, it definitely stands out and has a lot of complex, subtle ingredients that make it stand out as a good track in its own right, rather than just being there to pad the album out, as some bands might be prone to doing. Just as the album begun on a softer piano piece, so it ends in the same way.

This album, like I said, cannot be placed wholly into a single genre, and despite the strong Doom/Death overtones of this record, at closer inspection, you can tell that a lot more effort and influences were put into this which makes this more than "just another" Doom or Death Metal record. This is a very solid album, which the band should be proud of. And with any luck, what they have coming next will be equally, if not more, splendid.

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Post Mortem
2. 7
3. Wolf Will Swallow the Sun
4. Noctambulism
5. Edge
6. Truth Untold
Lineup:
Artem Ivanov - Drums
Mikhail Chuga - Guitars
Yuriy Politko - Guitars
Olga Bedash - Keyboards
Natalia Androsova - Vocals
Angelus - Bass
Record Label: Rain Without End Records
     


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Edited 28 October 2020
 

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