Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2019
Encyclopaedia Metallum

Best viewed
without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
or higher.

Privacy Policy

Solid USPM. - 85%

hells_unicorn, July 13th, 2007

There was a brief period in the late 1990s to early 2000s where a conglomeration of members of several previously well established US metal acts came together to form this brief musical stint known as Destiny’s End. Although short lived, it provided many a disillusioned American metal fan with a desire to hear more of the older speed/power metal that had been all but nuked out of existence due to changes in the interests of the recording industry with what they wanted to hear. Unlike their European power metal counterparts, this band is unapologetically USPM prime and builds songs completely around riffs, resulting in something that is a hell of a lot more aggressive sounding than Styx/Boston influenced, synthesizer happy, pomp power metal outfits such as Stratovarius, Freedom Call and Sonata Arctica. They also tend to avoid the happy/overtly catchy choruses that tend to pop up among more guitar driven European power metal outfits such as Iron Savior, Gamma Ray and Paragon.

The proficiency of all the musicians found in this outfit obviously demands attention, although one should not discount the solid songwriting going on here. James Rivera’s vocals are a bit deeper than the typical power metal singer, but he has no problem with occasionally shooting up into the higher register, as can be observed on the occasional testosterone deficient wails on “The Watcher” and “From Dust to Life”. The guitarists are highly proficient at lead, as can be observed in the solo sections of “The Suffering”, “Vanished” and “First you dream, then you die”. The rhythm section is tight and capable of occasionally showing their skill, be it the occasional bass run in the album’s token ballad “Storm Clouds”, or the fast as hell yet methodically consistent double bass pedal work on “The Watcher”. There aren’t really any loose ends in this fold as the songwriting credits list all of the band members as equals, indicating that like Black Sabbath these songs were all conceived in a rehearsal setting, rather than one dominant member ruling the direction of the band.

The one difficult part of this album was trying to pick a favorite, as all of these songs were obviously carefully crafted and listen well. For me, there are two songs on here that are tied for first, which happen to be completely different from each other. “Storm Clouds” has some really solid acoustic guitar work that really makes it stand out from the other songs, and contains the cleanest and strongest vocal performance out of Rivera. The album’s title track takes the lead in terms of lyrical interest, borrowing from The Matrix movie’s plot line depicting a race of machines dominating humanity, and including some rather robotic sounding narrations using some kind of vocal track manipulation. When you listen to the song and look at the album art you almost get the creepy sense that machines might be currently doing maintenance work on your body while you are trapped in a mechanically induced dream world, especially during the second narrated section in the middle of the song.

After this album the band disbanded so that Rivera could go back to being the front man of Helstar and the remaining members would gravitate to various other projects. In some ways it is unfortunate because this band really did have a lot of credibility to it, but basically it was a brief in-between thought for a group of metal veterans who had found themselves in a period of, for lack of a better word, transition. (no pun intended) Fans of USPM are encouraged to look at the first Destiny’s End album “Breathe Deep the Dark” as it has stronger songwriting, but this album is a worthy purchase if you have the money to afford both.