27 Feb 2024

Remember Me? | Join | Recover
Click here to sign in via social networking

End of an Empire - Album Review: Best Laid Plans

25 Sep 2023 // A review by River Tucker

It’s been a couple of years since End of an Empire released their favourably reviewed debut album, Within, Without in 2020. Since then, the Wellington-based four-piece have obviously put their time to good use by writing Best Laid Plans, which is arguably one of the finest Hardcore releases to come out of New Zealand this year.

While mainly delivering a traditional Hardcore sound, Best Laid Plans isn’t your typical Americanised Hardcore release. There’s a decent amount of Kiwi metal and punk influence going on to ensure listeners know exactly where this band hails from.

Although melodic progressions are generally straightforward, there’s a depth of musicality going on that gets better with every listen. At times, guitarist Hamish Dobbie employs some subtle semitone chord shifts, giving Best Laid Plans an excellent darker, doom-like, edge. Combine that point of difference with bass player Rowan Miller interposing a more Avant-punk tension into the riffs, along with Sam Coates' quintessentially Hardcore vocal style, and you have some energetic and electrifying songs to put on repeat.

Experimentation is great, but there are a few passages where the bass could more closely follow the guitar. The vocals also sit a bit separate in the mix, and the second vocal style feels a bit strained. Not to worry though. Apart from a few volume differences between tracks, End of an Empire gets everything else right. Each song has numerous melodic and tempo changes to keep listeners fully engaged, which along with a few appreciative nods to past and present Hardcore artists, plus consistently on-point drumming from Jerome Morris, ensure this is a well-structured and highly listenable release.

Excellent separation between instruments provides clarity to the mix, which is crisp but not overly processed. These tracks will obviously translate exceptionally well to being performed live, mainly because they’re infinitely playable, but also because there’s an endearing lack of engineering gimmicks going on.

From start to finish, End of an Empire doesn’t let up one bit throughout eleven expertly crafted songs. Written to elicit some serious moshing, you would have to be a bit dead to not get amped while listening to Best Laid Plans.


About End of an Empire

End of an Empire are a band from Wellington comprised of members of Declaration A.D., Dimestore Skanks and Canada.

They play loud music, but are fairly nice chaps.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for End of an Empire


Best Laid Plans
Year: 2023
Type: Album
Within, Without
Year: 2020
Type: Album

Other Reviews By River Tucker

Album Review: The Death Spell
12 Dec 2023 // by River Tucker
There’s a real whisky drinking, bare knuckle fighting edge to the self-titled debut album by The Death Spell, kicking off with Nail You Higher Than Before. Obviously, song lyrics are in your face on this track, especially for any Christians in the audience, but you couldn’t ask for a better intro to the musical style of this Auckland-based band.
Beastwars - Gig Review: Reign of the Beast @ Whanganui Musicians Club, Whanganui - 13/10/2023
15 Oct 2023 // by River Tucker
If you're into metal music, the Musicians Club in Whanganui was the place to be last Friday night for a feast of auditory delights to satisfy even the hungriest of souls. Brought to you by Lost Art and Panhead beer, Beastwars and Shepherds Reign headlined an epic concert that was set to bring the house down on the first leg of their not-to-be-missed Reign of the Beast tour.
The Rising Tide - Gig Review: Inferno - Youth Rock & Metal @ The Stomach, Palmerston North - 5/08/2023
07 Aug 2023 // by River Tucker
It’s not often that you get treated to a mid-winter concert where nearly every metal genre is being performed. But that’s exactly what happened at The Stomach in Palmerston North last Saturday night where four bands gave it their all in a rip-roaring all-ages show that will undoubtedly leave the hundred or so people who attended with lasting impressions.
Mammuthus - Album Review: Imperator
18 Jun 2023 // by River Tucker
If you like your stoner metal super-sized and embellished with a nice touch of doom, then Mammuthus’ latest release, Imperator, is definitely the album for you. Seven tracks of deliciously down-tuned, guitar-driven heaviness smash into your eardrums like a well-oiled and relentless steam train.
1 Drop Nation - Single Review: I'm Home
08 May 2023 // by River Tucker
When it comes to reggae music 1 Drop Nation's latest single, I'm Home, hits all the right notes. Soulful melodies, tight rhythms, and on-point vocals impart a feel-good vibe that will get you chilling or up and dancing, whatever mood you're in.
Gig Review: Devilskin @ The Royal, Palmerston North - 28/04/2023
30 Apr 2023 // by River Tucker
It was well worth getting in early to catch Devilskin’s exclusive VIP performance at The Royal in Palmerston North last Friday night. Following on from a successful show at Homegrown, Devilskin has embarked on their much-anticipated nationwide Let Me Breathe tour, brought to you by The Rock, after a short hiatus that, if anything, has made their current shows all the more sweet.
Gig Review #2: Homegrown 2023 @ Wellington Waterfront - 18/03/2023
21 Mar 2023 // by River Tucker
The weather gods must really love live music because they fully turned it on for the Jim Beam Homegrown music festival in Wellington last Saturday. Not only were the tunes absolutely fantastic, the crystal clear blue sky followed by a twinkling starry night set a magical scene for thousands of beautiful party people to enjoy some of New Zealand’s biggest bands performing across five stages on the capital’s spectacular waterfront.
Gig Review: Melanie @ Snails, Palmerston North - 04/03/2023
07 Mar 2023 // by River Tucker
What else was there to do last Saturday night except get out and support some live bands at a local music venue, in this case an all ages gig with Feildings Best Dancers, Crying Club and Melanie at the legendary Snails in Palmerston North.Snails also doubles as an artist space and there’s a considerable amount of well-lit artwork on display for people to appreciate.
View All Articles By River Tucker

NZ Top 10 Singles

    YG Marley
    Benson Boone
    Noah Kahan
    Teddy Swims
    Jack Harlow
    Taylor Swift
    Tate McRae
    Dua Lipa
View the Full NZ Top 40...
muzic.net.nz Logo
100% New Zealand Music
All content on this website is copyright to muzic.net.nz and other respective rights holders. Redistribution of any material presented here without permission is prohibited.
Report a ProblemReport A Problem