You know, I don't care who you are, but you've got to love lo-fi, dee-eye-why Heavy Metal. Well, maybe you don't have to, but if you want to have the status of "cool fella in the eyes of one Wesley", you had better recognize the awesomeness intrinsic to unadulterated Metallic goodness. And if you do recognize that intrinsic awesomeness, you're probably going to enjoy "Sadly Never Fore", the second full-length by USA True Metallers UPWARDS OF ENDTIME. Though the album title might evoke images of Doom or Goth and the band's moniker might bring to mind some sort of Prog Rock, the band is balls-out Heavy Metal of the old school variety. And for that, I give them a nod.
A nod, that is, but not necessarily a raving review. Not yet. It's up to the music more than the attitude. Well, UPWARDS OF ENDTIME not only play with the righteous Heavy Metal spirit, but they also write good songs and play them pretty well to boot. It's not perfect - the production is pretty weak and some of the songs are clunkers, but with tracks like "So Mote It Be" and "Circles: Reprise", UPWARDS OF ENDTIME show that they can piece together some real fist-pumping Heavy Metal anthems. I also found the vocals a bit off-putting at first, but the not-quite-conventional singing eventually grew on me and became an integral part of the aforementioned tracks.
Listening to this album shows that the Heavy Metal underground is alive and kicking, though it isn't exactly awe-inspiring throughout. There are some real gems here, though, convincing me that once UPWARDS OF ENDTIME hone their craft just a bit more - and get some better production - they will be a Metallic force to be reckoned with. Check it out and support underground Metal! (Online October 18, 2006)