It has only been a year since the last Blaze Bayley release. Infinite Entanglement from 2016 was a great surprise to many, a huge return to form by the former Iron Maiden singer and the follow up Endure And Survive continues that creative streak.
With his creative song writing, fantastic backing band and great studio production, Bayley released one smashing album, one of what is the first of three concept albums. Infinite Entanglement was a big step up from the previously released, The King of Metal and fans were happy to accept this new music with open arms.
Well fans, I hope you’re ready to open those arms again because not only is Endure And Survive just as good as its predecessor but actually improves on it in some aspects. The new record picks up where the last album left off in terms of story and takes it to a much darker place. Lyrically there are a lot of dark themes, a lot of which are a fascinating contrast to the more sci-fi orientated Infinite Entanglement and are quite poetic in some aspects. Blaze Bayley has always been great at writing and telling a story with a very personal style. Despite the concept and themes, that aspect from his past work stays very much true and will help fans of old to relate to his music.
The change in tone is also heard in the bands sound. The music has Blaze Bayley’s trademark old school riffs but the music mixes it up a little with some heavier than normal moments, very similar to his Blood & Belief album. You will also find the return of the more melodic side of things in Remember and the epic closing track Together We Can Move The Sun. These songs are in the same style as What Will Come from the previous album, features the same stunning acoustic guitar work and even some lovely female backing vocals. These songs do not get in the way of the albums pace and provides the record with some much needed variety.
If you enjoyed Blaze’s change in vocal style on the last record, you will like it even more here. Not only does he utilise his limited range with great power and effect but he tries to push his voice into higher territory producing a sound that is very uncharacteristic of Blaze Bayley. Another interesting aspect to this album is the narration that happens between and during songs. Normally bands kill their albums momentum by dumping these between numbers as a sort of interlude. This is not the case on Endure And Survive with the monologues etc being cleverly utilised in instrumental sections of the songs. The voice actors portraying the characters do a commendable job by not making it sound forced, fake or unintentionally funny. They do their part as the band keep a solid groove and it works tremendously well at keeping the music flowing whilst telling a good story.
From a technical aspect, Endure And Survive is a beautiful sounding album. On top of the stunning musicianship and top quality vocals, we are treated to some very fine production. The album retains a lot of the familiar sound but reduces the power drum sound for a much sleeker more professional style.
Endure And Survive I doubt will bring in new fans, people predictably won’t give Bayley a chance, even after all these years. That is their loss as Endure And Survive is not only one of the finest albums released by the singer, it alongside its predecessor really out performs everything his previous band has done this past seventeen years. Blaze fans will want to pick this up without a second thought. It is a fantastic record from start to finish.
Where to buy :
Track Listing :
- Endure and Survive
- Escape Velocity
- Eating Lies
- Dawn of the Dead Son
- Fight Back
- The World is Turning the Wrong Way
- Together We Can Move the Sun