End Of All Days
Released: 1996, Gun Records
Editors Note. Metal-Rules.com was founded in 1995 as a forward thinking site. Our goal is, and always has been, to support Real Metal. The decision was made that very rarely do we ever go back and review an album from before 1995. Does the world really need another CD review of Master Of Puppets, Powerslave or Screaming For Vengeance? We don’t think so. We have always supported what is happening now.
Starting in January, 2014, as we head towards the 20th Anniversary of Metal-Rules.com, we are looking back and filling in a few gaps in the review database. We want to complete the post-1995 review catalogue of some of the bands that we have supported since 1995, when very few, if any, websites were supporting real Metal. It’s fun to go back and revisit some of these albums that we did not review when they were first released. Enjoy!
A six-pack of RAGE!! In celebration of the 30th Anniversary of Germany’s Rage I’m going to reviews some older Rage albums. The albums in this feature are, BLACK IN MIND, LINGUA MORTIS, END OF ALL DAYS, XIII, FULL MOON IN ST. PETERSBURG and the 30th Anniversary compilation, THE SOUNDCHASER ARCHIVES. Please enjoy all the albums in this raging feature.
In my mind I’ve always paired END OF ALL DAYS and BLACK IN MIND and just a mere year later after the latter, Rage were back with another full-length studio album. They are like dark, evil twins. Nothing had changed, why mess with perfection? END OF ALL DAYS is on the same label, same line-up, recorded in the same studio (Gelsenkirchen) with the same producer (Ulli Posselt) and again the orchestration by Christian Wolff. Even Andreas Marshall is back to do the cover art. It is another long album, over an hour and again, 14 songs. In my mind the two are almost interchangeable and, in fact, I will often listen to them back to back. After this point the band decided to evolve and do another similar pair of albums XIII and GHOSTS.
END OF ALL DAYS opens with a killer, triple power-attack of ‘Under Control’, ‘Higher Than The Sky’ and ‘Deep In The Blackest Hole’. The middle song has over time a Rage signature song. It lends itself very well to a huge sing-along. It became the ‘hit’ single, an EP and still often closes Rage concerts to this day, as well as being the final cut on both Live albums they have released. It is a quintessentially classic Rage cut. This album is perhaps a little more streamlined than the past few with all 14 songs in the 4-5 minute range, there is no epic piece on this album. The songwriting is very, I hesitate to say simple, but the arrangements are conventional, verse, chorus, verse chorus etc, allowing for the catchy choruses to have maximum effectiveness. Peavy’s voice is still rough and raw, still avoiding the upper registers that he did earlier in his career and essentially leaving that singing style in the past. There are a couple of very good slow songs ‘Fortress’ and again, just like BLACK IN MIND, the album ends with a lush ballad, ‘Fading Hours’ that contains acoustic guitar and piano and a huge vocal line. Overall END OF ALL DAYS may be a slightly slower album, but no less intense and the lyrics still explore some darker topics of ‘death’, ‘night’ or being trapped or imprisoned, all common Rage topics.
If I had to choose between BLACK IN MIND and END OF ALL DAYS I think BLACK IN MIND might get the slight nod. I think that might be a common sentiment as more songs from BLACK IN MIND still appear in Rage concert set-lists today with the exception of the aforementioned uber-popular ‘Higher Than The Sky’. END OF DAYS was a bit of an end of a musical era because after this point the band decided to evolve into a more orchestral style and do another similar pair of albums, XIII and GHOSTS.