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Endless

beauty, tears and the setting sun

Pavement

Though Endless' calling card may be mid-paced, song-oriented death metal mildly patterned after early My Dying Bride and Gorguts, the Toronto troupe's beauty, tears and the setting sun isn't an entirely faceless affair. The first third of the album merely chugs without much of a purpose, almost sinking as low as metal-core muck. But come the truly sinister "Smoke," it becomes apparent that Endless does have a purpose other than paying homage to its predecessors: upping the emotional content of a seemingly incoherent, gargled genre; still, homage paid to Endless' predecessors, but a worthy ideal worth aspiring to. The same (if not more so) goes for the following "A Weeping Mist Reveals," a torrent of doom flailingly scarred, Endless fully displaying its potential. If the seasick riffing of "The Unrest" isn't enough to shut the mouths of naysayers, Endless closes beauty on an aesthetically-positive/emotionally-depressing note with "Everlasting Dream," funereal atmosphere, weeping violins, choke-up vocals, somber guitar work and all -- yes, death metal dudes can be just as "emo" as any sissy pop-bands-in-disguise, plus the former can (rightfully) beat the shit out of the latter.

Pavement Music, P.O. Box 50550, Phoenix, AZ 85076; http://www.pavementmusic.com

--Nathan T. Birk