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Dreadnought – “The Endless” Review

The latest from the Denver ensemble is a wondrous and quite moving affair.

Photograph by Frank Guerra

Words by Rohan (@manvsplaylist):

Dreadnought have always been an act that push boundaries, blur genre lines, and challenge expectations. On their fifth album, The Endless, a follow-up to 2019’s masterful Emergence, the Denver based 4-piece act continue to evolve their sound in wildly creative directions, expanding into new hypnotic realms as they mark their 10th year as a collective entity.

The Endless is a captivating listen, front to back. There’s no way around it. The progressive tendencies are still here, but with a gentler emphasis on rapid rhythmic changes & technical flair that punctuated the style across prior works. Instead, this new offering contains a decidedly more ethereal & nuanced touch. Each of the cuts feature a heightened sense of fluidity, space and balance spanning the entire album. The band are as tight as ever, with the groove & flair laid down by Jordan Clancy behind the kit proving once again to be a perfect fit, while never seeking to overtake the spotlight and push the sound further into full prog territory.

That fluidity & balance is most evident in the vocal trade-offs that Kelly Schilling and Lauren Vieira manage to find within each track. The duality of vocal tones & styles has always been a part of the Dreadnought aesthetic, but on The Endless, they are given greater focus, allowing their contrasts to create superb dynamism & intricate layers that weave their way through the course of every track.

Vocal performance highlights are all over this album, whether it be Shilling’s more refrained harmonies entwined with Lauren’s operatic falsettos (check Midnight Moon), or her forceful, soaring finale on the brooding album-closer, The Paradigm Mirror, her range is exceptional. Each track across the album is punctuated by piercing shrieks and howls that provide a constant source of tension.

The vocal side isn’t the only component of their sound to be re-prioritized on this record. The use of keys & synths were a core component of the band’s work to date, but are placed with far greater prominence across these new compositions, and play a more crucial role in forming the driving hooks rather than simply being a backing texture.

Combined, by bringing these two elements to the forefront of the sound on The Endless, Dreadnought have created a more grandiose and complete album than any of their prior releases. This record continues the arc of the bands sound in moving ever so slightly away from the more conventional progressive metal stylings that were core to A Wake In Sacred Waves, shifting into a more nuanced approach with trademark atypical song structures and gorgeously haunting passages.

This is yet another incredible release from the Profound Lore stable, a label that continues to feature some of the most diverse, creative, and interesting sounds spanning the underground. Consider this a masterful album from a band exuding confidence and commanding perfect balance.

The Endless arrives August 26th via Profound Lore Records (Order).

Cover Artwork by Reza Afshar


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