This Ending - Inside The Machine
Metal Blade
Melodic Death Metal
10 songs (43'20)
Release year: 2006
This Ending, Metal Blade
Reviewed by Crims

Those of you who were heavily into the Melodic Death boom of the mid to late 90’s may or not remember a band called A Canorous Quintet. They released two full-lengths in the late 90’s right along side the big names at the time: In Flames, Dark Tranquility, Arch Enemy, and At The Gates. Nobody, least of all me, is really sure why the band didn’t last. I remember their music vaguely through mp3s and never owned a CD from them. The general opinion is that they were an above average band that probably should have made it big, or at least bigger, as they weren’t any worse than the bands who did “make it”. 7 years later the band decided to reform and change their name to This Ending. All original members have returned (which is impressive in on it self) and the band still plays Melodic Death Metal with a modern touch including minor industrial influences and a lot of riff chugging.

Some of This Ending’s music is a bit of a time-warp back to the late 90’s, albeit with a super slick modern production job. I found many of the mid-paced sections and choruses to have atmosphere’s (through leads and vocal melodies) similar to older Dark Tranquility. Meanwhile the majority of the verses have more of a modern touch with a lot of heavy riff chugging. Occasionally a definable Gothenburg-half-Thrash riff works its way into the music and at other times they forgoe all of this for melody and atmosphere building riff progression with lead-themed verses such as on Lidless Eyes (which is very Dark Tranquility sounding). This Ending vary their rhythms quite a bit as the drums are also a time-warp back to when the Gothenburg bands used almost blast beats intermingled with very quick double bass spurts to move along the tempos; this is also reminiscent of some older Dark Tranquility along with Night In Gales. This is not really a bad thing as it works well for the band and most new Gothenburg based bands have abandoned this in favor of gratuitous double bass and simpler rhythms. Vocally, Marten Hansen does an excellent job as he stays in the classic mid-range Melodic Death style while incorporating deeper growls. There is a lot of vocal doubling which in retrospect is perhaps over-used but certainly adds a lot of forcefulness and immediacy to the proceedings. Also, most lyrics can be understood and I didn’t really have any issues with them as a whole. The phrasing and placement is excellent if nothing new and the inclusion of unexpected and surprisingly original sounding clean vocals on Armageddon were well done.

I’ve always been partial to old In Flames, Dark Tranquility, Night In Gales, etc. The mixing of traditional and melodic leads with more aggressive rhythms and riffs (not to mentione harsh vocals) was highly original at the time but quickly became oversaturated as bands just started throwing random Iron Maiden leads in with half-Death/Thrash riffs. The best of the genre always managed to exceed because of interesting rhythm structures and strong atmospheres; and of course memorable leads. The Jester Race and Skydancer are two of my favorite releases from the genre and while I’m not really comparing this to those classics it’s nice to hear some of the aspects that made those releases great in this CD. Of course, for every moment of nostalgia there’s a moment of down-tuned riffs that wouldn’t sound out of place on a recent Nevermore release. Once again, this in itself is not a bad thing but may get on the nerves of Metal fans who detest anything remotely modern sounding. I for one found it to mix with the mostly forgotten classic style quite well. While I don’t believe this is the second coming of a late 90’s Melodic Death revival with “new” influences it was an enjoyable listen. If the band released this 6 years ago instead of taking the 7 year break I think it would have made a bigger splash but now in a convoluted genre of miss-placed aggression and border-line ‘core influences most people have given up on the style in general. For those of you who don’t mind some of the old with some of the new through down-tuned chugging riffs on about 50 percent of the verses, industrial styled vocal effects (on occasion) and the odd machine-like drumming (think Fear Factory) than this may appeal to you.

The best songs on this release were the one’s with the most classic elements but I’d be lying if I said the modern, pounding riffs of Pitch Black and Let The World Burn were not catchy as they got my head moving and feet moving rather quickly. What was nice was that despite the pounding riffs the band still usually included a background lead which made the overall effect rather enjoyable as opposed to annoying; the best example would be on Into Pain, however the Nevermore with harsh vocals styled chorus on the same song is an example of what can easily go wrong when modern influences are employed. I am excited to hear what the bands comes up with next and I hope they don’t take another 7 years to unleash something new.

Killing Songs :
Pitch Black, Plague Angel, Lidless Eyes, Let The World Burn, This Ending
Crims quoted 78 / 100
Other albums by This Ending that we have reviewed:
This Ending - Dead Harvest reviewed by Khelek and quoted 80 / 100
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