Review: “For The Time Being” by Endeavour

The tracks don’t necessarily link to one another by telling one overarching story. However, some songs do have a connection to each other by delving a bit into personal matters. Others tell stories that are much broader and less personal. ‘For The Time Being’ captures the contrast between fleeting personal issues and the broader problems we face. They make up a big part of someone’s journey through life but are definitely not always insurmountable, though it does feel like that sometimes. ‘For The Time Being’ is all about that journey for us. It reminds us about the seemingly hopeless and overwhelming situations we find ourselves in that we’ve been able to get past. Some issues might still be there, but that’s okay for the time being. We’ve learned a lot during the process of making this record, and are happy we are finally able to show it to the world!” ~ Endeavour

A Progressive Metalcore band who confess to taking influence from Northlane, Architects and Loathe to name but a few, Dutch quintet Endeavour started waterfall releasing singles from their debut album “For The Time Being” as far back as 2020. Working with producer and audio engineer Tommie Bonajo who also mixed and mastered the tracks, the band had already refined the songs during live shows with everyone from Immerse to For I Am King that they started playing in 2018. That enabled them to simultaneously begin work on their sophomore album, their debut placing the seven singles plus two further from those sessions into a single vessel for human consumption. It should also be noted that at some point along the line the band have changed lead guitarist with Rob Heyen playing on three cuts (Blur, Colourblind, Sober, For The Time Being) and Vincent Kuijpers playing the remaining five (127, Black Box, Definite, Aimless and Breathe)…

Given the influences Endeavour cite it should be no surprise that what they deliver with their debut album is thirty two minutes of power and passion, opening cut “Define” sounding distinctively reminiscent of the current generation of Progressive Metalcore bands and in particular Australians Polaris. The cuts are short and sweet without any of the endless wandering generally associated with the “Progressive” genres, the opening cut laced with staccato riff breaks and programming, rich clean vocals and vicious uncleans. Vocalist Gijs Smeets is the embodiment of two vocalists, such is the contrast between those two styles, while the personal nature of the lyrics is matched stride for stride by an emotive performance. Second cut “Blur” continues in the same vein but with less of the crunch, the warmth of the sonic soundscape captivating with DJent infused rhythms from Anthony Scheijen providing a solid backbone, the early stand out is however “Black Box“. That’s largely down to its huge chorus and catchy nature, reminiscent of Denmark’s finest export Siamese with a bombastic bass line taking hold towards the end. Another with origins in darkness, this one was inspired by the MH-17 passenger plane shot out of the sky, killing everyone on board. It’s veiled and metaphorical enough that you can make it your own but the knowledge of the true meaning adds a weight and gravity to it. Similarly  “Aimless” is one for the conspiracy theorists, the tapping sections of guitar work being absolutely sublime and the drum sound from Teun Wolfs huge, Bonajo nailing the mix.

The hatchet that splits the album clean in half is “Colourblind“, a cut which exposes the ability to create a greater contrast within the bands sound, pushing the extremes further apart. There is a vulnerability in the opening verse, contrasted by menacing rhythms that approach a breakdown with unclean vocals before a huge clean chorus and almost choral backing vocals. That creates an arena sized sound with an epic grandeur that is equally contrasted by a deep rooted sense of melancholia, the result being something that will no doubt take the band to bigger stages. The Red Sea is parted by “Sober“, the albums most melodic offering in the opening half as it builds to a huge “Alien” era Northlane inspired breakdown section in the middle and a savage verse. Arguably the bands finest moment, the sheer power of it is magnificent. Credited as the only song written by the bands former guitarist Kuijpers, “Breathe” has drum and bass fuelled electronics with a Gloom Metal backbone, the guitars punching holes in the skull with nasty breakdowns. Its a vicious little ditty that could even be credited as a remix in some quarters as it as enough electronics to feed an army and when compared to the earlier tracks could even be from a different band. Variety is however the spice of life and long may it remain in the bands live set because its energy is phenomenal. Inspired by the movie 127 hours and the first single the band released, “127” actually encapsulates the bands overall sound in single easy to swallow pill, Smeets vocals never giving away where the band are from. A blistering title track in “For The Time Being” closes out the album ensuring that it’s all killer, no filler with another monstrous performance. Floor filling breakdowns nasty and perfectly balanced off by the powerful clean chorus. There isn’t much more you could want from a Progressive Metalcore album and Endeavour have just announced themselves as contenders for the genre crown [8.5/10]

Track Listing

1. Definite
2. Blur
3. Black Box
4. Aimless
5. Colourblind
6. Sober
7. Breathe
8. 127
9. For The Time Being

For The Time Being” by Endeavour is out 16th June 2023


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