Genre: Metalcore, Melodic Hardcore
Release Date: 22th June 2020
After almost three years, Korean band “End These Days” finally released their new EP Dead End. In 2017, they released their debut album titled Ambivalence, which I really enjoyed and still enjoy today, mostly because of the mixture of melodic hardcore and heavy hardcore similar to bands like Counterparts and Desolated. The topics and sound are less ambivalent on Dead End but interesting, nonetheless.
The EP consists of three songs and spans over around 12 and a half minutes. You can find it using the link to the band’s bandcamp. It was produced by Jeff Dunne who has already worked with bands such as Veil of Maya, Motionless in White and Silent Planet.
It was definitely worth the wait despite the short running time and it makes me crave more. Enjoy.
Dead End for Whom?!
As mentioned before, the band found itself mostly between melodic and heavy hardcore on their debut LP. However, there were already hints of metalcore in their music back then.
On this EP, the band moves more towards metalcore with some hints of Architects. In that process, the band does not completely change up their style, though. They are still the same band and there are elements of their old music throughout the entirety of this EP. From now and then, there are some melodic elements and heavy breakdowns as in their old songs. Accordingly, the band does not end up at a dead end but they open new doors to develop their sound.
The opening track Dead End reminds me of the band’s earlier work. It merges elements of hardcore and metalcore and despite being heavy, it is still melodic. Especially the breakdown towards the end made me like this song, since it sent me back to the days when I discovered this band in 2017. Despite that, End These Days do not merely warm up old schemes but they develop them further. The singer uses more of his range and shows his highs, which were not as present on their older songs. Thus, the band uses what worked well on the precursor and adds some new elements to the mix. This is a solid opening track.
As the name suggests, the lyrics deal with the dead end that our generation is headed for, mainly because of our own and older generations’s stagnancy. One aspect that was particularly interesting was how the lyrics hint on elder generations possibly changing the situation for worse despite having good intentions.
Karma is the longest and most diverse song on this EP. The band transitions between atmospheric metalcore and heavier hardcore sections. A metalcore intro is followed by a two step beat and a melodic breakdown.
Again, the band stays true to its origins and adds new elements to its sound. There is some growth in comparison with the first album. For instance, the chorus is really reminiscent of Sam Carter from Architects and the singer again uses more of his range than on earlier releases. Metalcore also dominates the second half of this track and there is a pre-breakdown with strong Alpha Wolf vibes leading into a heavy breakdown that screams ‘End These Days!’. The Koreans draw inspiration from several other bands but still maintain their own style.
The first song’s motive is continued in Karma, which revolves around a disastrous future that is described in simple, yet strong allegories. The lyrics in the band’s songs tend to be interesting but on older releases they were sometimes overly complicated and odd at times but here, they are simple and on point and despite that not flat.
Unfortunately, we already reach the end with the third song Vein. The intro is quite idyllic until fast and melodic instrumentals kick in. Again, there is an Architects-type of chorus and the bridge is really similar to the the first record Ambivalence. Youtuber Yang Jin Hyun rounds things up with his guest appearance in form of a guitar solo and the EP comes to a close.
Although the motives on this EP are mostly negative, Vein ends it with a hopeful atmosphere. Even if things seem hopeless, all we can do is move on and try to do our best. Accordingly, despite the hopelessness, there is still hope. Dead End conveys a positive message in a turbulent time and warns us of the dead end we may find ourselves in in the future.
End These Days stay true to themselves and enrich their sound with new elements at the same time. On this release, they lean more towards metalcore than before and constantly develop.
This EP is the right thing for you if you liked Ambivalence. Even if you did not know the band so far, I can recommend this EP and band if you like metalcore. They add something fresh to this genre, which honestly champions lots of uninspired bands. End These Days are not one of these bands.
Overall, this EP is solid. My ony gripe with it is that it’s too short. However, it makes me crave more for the exact same reason and I am curious to see when the second album drops and how the band will continue to develop their sound on it. Apart from that, this EP only costs three Dollars so you cannot make any mistake here.
Since I am quite busy at the moment, my next post may come out a bit later than planned. I will keep you updated on my social media accounts.
Until next time.
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