08. Hope Universal
[Independent | 2010]
Take one part Dream Theater, one part Disturbed, and one part Strapping Young Lad and throw them in a blender. The end result is an interesting mixture called ENDITOL, a two-man project featuring Divinity‘s Sacha Laskow and AutoBody vocalist Jerrod Maxwell-Lyster.
As the album art would suggest, ENDITOL is a progressive and industrial tinged metal band with dark melodic atmosphere going on through the music. Just as Meshuggah and Strapping Young Lad, ENDITOL’s music can be chuggy without the annoyance and technical without all the directionless wank. The composition is on point, complete with tasty riffs and solos that are bound to get you hooked. Synths are also thrown in from time to time to exclamate the prog and minute industrial influences. All of this works together wonderfully in context and makes for a heavy and catchy experience.
Vocal work is exceptional as well, bearing a remarkable resemblance to Disturbed’s David Draiman. The similarity is very strong, and while the thought might turn off some listeners, the very rhythmic delivery and powerful soaring melodies travel comfortably with the path that Sacha has laid in the music. At times, there can be a slight avant-garde feeling to the vocals (especially in opening track “Monoculture”), which further contributes to the progressive nature of the album.
The music, while dark at points, does manage to enthrall the listener with something beautiful, as in the hook-laden “Ayin,” which features flourishing harmonic guitar and synth solos. “Heavenvein” starts out as a balad before things get really heavy. The album’s final track “Hope Universal” is also a fitting end by being very melodic (the song’s “chorus” is fitting enough for a USPM band) and one of the most memorable songs on the album.
The production on this album was done by Sacha, the same man who wrote all the music. He did an excellent job, as everything rings through crystal clear and sounds huge. Everything is just tight and sounds great, which is something that should be commended. As I mentioned earlier, ENDITOL doesn’t pussyfoot around when it comes to composition. Everything flows well and each section matters just as much as the sections before it. The album is fairly short and runs a little over a half hour, deciding to take a bow before overstaying their welcome.
These guys are no ripoff band by any means. While it is easy to pick out parts and sections that would fit well within their obvious influences, ENDITOL manage to bring a unique sound that is far from generic. As hodge-podge as they may be, they deserve to be taken in on their own merits, as they can write some killer tunes.
ENDITOL – ENDITOL gets…