13 Sep 2021 - Pat O'
post-rock/post-metal/progressive metal | Release date: 27 Aug 2021
Ripping through many post genres, End Of Kumari have released a captivating EP that has it all. Rich melodies, great atmospheric highs and stirring climatic crescendos are all packed into their brilliant debut release Stories From The Floating World
When you listen to End Of Kumari for the first time, it’s hard to believe that they were founded in 2020! Yes, only a year ago! The following intro is going to be the shortest I have ever written, simply because we need to get talking about their music. They have a sound that is years ahead of itself, and it needs to be heard. But before you press play, take a moment to digest and acknowlege the amazing artwork that accompanies the music, Wow!. Anyway, on with the review!
“Black Aurora” is the opening track and it’s beautiful. A Solitary guitar chord opens with crisp clean drums and a light peppering of synths for atmosphere and ambiance. On this track however, we don’t get that “post-rock” hallmark of patient builds and unhurried intensity. Instead, the track shows its teeth instantly with sharp riffs and stirring solos. There’s an air of energy and positivity right from the off despite the title having very different connotations. The music dips to allow the bass to make itself known and take the lead, plucking a terrific hook courtesy of Bat-Erdene Bayasgalan. From the ebb of the bass and drums, the track resurrects itself once more with a flow of positivity and upbeat intentions. Lead guitars, chugging riffs and tightly timed drums get into their groove, laying down a hugely melodic and warm finale to the track with shredding passages and swirling passionate melodies.
The second track on the album “The Sisters Of Sorrow” opens with an instant injection of power and poise thanks to Nathanael Häberle’s thunderous drums that pound with metronomic precision. But no sooner do you find yourself warming to the power and pace it pulsates, the track shifts to a groove-heavy melody dressed in interludes of ripping guitars and funky “math-rock” nuances. Just as that classic eighties track warned you, “The rhythm is gonna get you”, the hooks on “Sisters Of Sorrow”, with those off-time beats, and that loose free flowing lead guitar passages will immerse you. The track closes with more of a “post-rock” theme, with all musicians creating a surge of power and magnificence that will excite and captivate right up to the last chord.
We all love our “post-rock” and “post-metal” right? But I think we all agree that it’s a deeply saturated ocean. The “post-rock” waters have become opaque with talent. You really do need to bring something unique to the table, something that will give you an edge and keep your head above that dense and heavy water. End Of Kumari have an edge to them. They have the ability and the confidence to borrow ideas from other genres such as Progressive, Alternative and Math Rock and metal, and seamlessly integrate these little subtleties into their work and give us a fresh, double edged sound. Yes, they still follow the “Post-Rock code” to an extent, and there’s moments where bands like If These Trees Could Talk, literally talk to you through their music! It can’t be helped. One thing is for certain though, if End Of Kumari are releasing quality “post” music at this early stage in their career, then they really do have something special in them.
The next two tracks “Given Chances Lost Their Purpose” and “Weight Of Time” show what I already mentioned earlier. The tracks ebb and flow with ease, changing styles from “post-metal” prowess to ambient tremolo wanderings. It’s all seductively bathed in melody and mild melancholia. The pendulum swings back and forth between Jan Hofmann and Marvin Schäfer with some sublime guitar work that digs and gouges out deep rhythm sections and fills them with sweet soaring solos.
The Closing track to the EP “The Fall Of The Lighthouse” Is another track of sonic soundscapes and driving “post-metal”. I already touched on the influence that If These Trees Could Talk must have had on creating the sound on Stories From The Floating World. Flares of The Bones Of A Dying World keep flashing through my head as I listen to this track in particular. And if that’s the case you can expect a crushing and thunderous ending, and you are not left disappointed! The track closes with a flurry of riffs, pounding drums and shuddering bass strings. The tempo is intense, with the guitars getting a little dirty and gritty, thrashing out the last few chords before an unexpected and very abrupt end.
Stories From The Floating World is a huge EP in terms of debut material. The production is spot on and the duration of the EP is perfect. Even the artwork of Magdalena Firlej is stunning. There’s nothing else left to say here, only to go check these guys out through Bandcamp and try catch them live.