I love End These Days and I should have talked about Ambivalence much sooner. Essentially, if you like hardcore punk rock, then you must listen to End These Days. Ambivalence was probably one of the best releases in 2017. From start to finish, this album keeps giving and giving. The punishing guitars and in-your-face bass along with some of the best drumming I’ve heard are all capped off by amazing vocals. I can understand that some people consider hardcore punk as noise, but if you can start listening beyond that initial impression, you start hearing amazing lyrics and some technical instrumentation.
What sticks out a lot about Ambivalence is that the high level of polish the album has while not making End These Days sound overly “clean.” I mean that the instruments all have their place in the mix, but are arranged so that everything has a perfect place. Every beat has weight and listening to the album with a good pair of headphones or speakers gives Ambivalence its due. “Temper” is a great example of how the mix and mastering let the song speak as it should while offering the best audio experience. While I don’t expect this kind of audio at a live show, it provides the “best” audio experience strictly in audio sense.
“Solace” (Feat. Ryo Kinoshita of Crystal Lake) might be my favorite song. The drumming is amazing. It gives the song the required tempo while also adding flair and accents around each verse. The album is a little short of 30 minutes, but each song somehow feels longer. That’s not a knock, but each track is able to get an entire statement within a short amount of time giving the album a lot of depth.
I want more punk bands in South Korea, but the ones around are making amazing music. End These Days represent Busan hardcore with pride and Ambivalence is definitely a classic that needs to be recognized.