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THE END IS BEAUTIFUL

Echolyn

Symphonic Prog


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Echolyn The End Is Beautiful album cover
3.94 | 156 ratings | 21 reviews | 23% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection


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Studio Album, released in 2005

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Georgia Pine (5:49)
2. Heavy Blue Miles (6:48)
3. Lovesick Morning (10:12)
4. Make Me Sway (5:22)
5. The End is Beautiful (7:45)
6. So Ready (5:01)
7. The Arc of Descent (Dancing in a Motel Just West of Lincoln) (5:46)
8. Misery, Not Memory (9:03)

Total Time: 55:46

Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Brett Kull / guitars, vocals
- Paul Ramsey / drums
- Ray Weston / vocals
- Tom Hyatt / bass
- Chris Buzby / keyboards

Releases information

CD Velveteen VR2010

Thanks to danbo for the addition
and to chutch15 for the last updates
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EcholynEcholyn
CD Baby 2012
Audio CD$16.62
$31.82 (used)
MeiMei
CD Baby 2004
Audio CD$12.98
$7.55 (used)
As the WorldAs the World
Sony 1995
Audio CD$13.50
$3.15 (used)
Cowboy Poems FreeCowboy Poems Free
CD Baby 2009
Audio CD$10.99
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End Is BeautifulEnd Is Beautiful
Import
CD BABY.COM/INDYS 2006
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Suffocating the BloomSuffocating the Bloom
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Audio CD$12.98
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A Little NonsenseA Little Nonsense
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As the WorldAs the World
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Stars & GardensStars & Gardens
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DVD$35.46
$24.74 (used)
When The Sweet Turns SourWhen The Sweet Turns Sour
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Audio CD$16.99
$7.97 (used)
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ECHOLYN The End Is Beautiful ratings distribution


3.94
(156 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(23%)
23%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(46%)
46%
Good, but non-essential (25%)
25%
Collectors/fans only (5%)
5%
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)
0%

ECHOLYN The End Is Beautiful reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Dan Bobrowski
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Echolyn keeps progressing, adding new twists and influences into their distinctive brand of Progressive Rock. The return of Tom Hyatt on bass adds flavor and a bit of funk as the rhythm section becomes more versatile and cohessive. A little popping bottom end opens the doors for the brass section that appears on a few tracks. The clavinet on So Ready screams of Stevie Wonder and even gives a slight taste of Superstitions. This may be their most eclectic outing yet.

It took about six full listens to unlock the complexities that at first don't sound all that tricky. Some of the tunes, on the surface, came across as simplistic and a kind of step back from the challenging compositions we've come to expect from this group. There are many multi-layered instrumental pieces that aren't audible at first due to the high production quality. I tried to follow a single instrument throughout, but got caught up in the fabulous melodies and intricate undercurrents.

Make Me Sway (Which you can download for free from their website) rocks hard with Ray Weston putting forth some pure anger while vocalizing about being lied to. So Ready follows in the vein of porous relationships. Arc of Descent: Dancing in a Motel just West of Lincoln finds Brett Kull singing a very disturbing suicide note with a somewhat dreamy, pretty melody that belies the message. A very dark, hopeless and sad painting of pain and dispair. Georgia Pines uses alcohol to dull the pain of never achieving the good life, the path to glory and happiness. The punchy rhythm, hammond melody and brass accompaniment are at odds with the harsh lyrics.

Chris Buzby really shows versatility on various keyboards, keeping the heavy subject matter bouyant with sweet instrumental punctuations. Paul Ramsey, highly underrated, drums up perfect counterpoint to the Tom Hyatt's lively bass lines. Ray Weston and Brett Kull sound very fresh and compliment each other so well vocally. Kull's guitar playing is as strong and consistently inventive as ever. Hyatt, Ramsey and Buzby also chip in with background vocals.

I can't say this is my favorite Echolyn release, but it will get heavy rotation with As the World, Cowboy Poems Free and Suffocating the Bloom. It is a grower, but should appeal to anyone who enjoys fresh, innovative progressive rock.

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Send comments to Dan Bobrowski (BETA) | Report this review (#45296) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, September 02, 2005

Review by erik neuteboom
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars A few weeks ago I went to an Echolyn concert after watching their stunning DVD. Well, Echolyn blew me and the audience away, what a powerful sound and what a killer voice! On their new album "The end is beautiful" Echolyn has succeeded to capture the spirit 'on stage', what a dynamic and alternating sound and how elaborate the 8 compositions are (as the previous reviewers already pointed at).

1. Georgia pine (5.49) : A swinging rhythm and a powerful sound featuring raw vocals, evoking the early Kansas. The interplay is excellent, especially between the organ and rhythm- section. After a flashy synthesizer solo and a fiery electric guitar solo follows a break with emotional vocals and tender piano. Then heavy guitar-riffs, lush Hammond organ and again raw vocals. The music sound scaptivating and contains a lot of tension.

2. Heavy blue miles (6.48) : This composition is loaded with shifting moods and changes of accellaration, from slow with piano and fine vocals to fluent and bombastic with fiery electric guitar and floods of organ. Remarkable is the integration of brass (sax and trumpet), very distinctive are their organ-guitar interplay and the vocal hamronies (like Gentle Giant).

3. Lovesick morning (10.12) : A melancholical song (as you could expect from this title) with a slow rhythm, wailing vocals, several sound effects and trumpet play in the vein of Miles Davis. The build-up and final part are wonderful featuring a splendid solo on the lap-steel-guitar.

4. Make me sway (5:22) : Again lots of variation, from slow to mid-tempo and bombastic, all layered with lush Hammond organ, a fat guitar sound and powerful, inspired vocals. The pieces with sampled choir-Mellotron are awesome! The closing section contains a fine organ solo with propulsive drums and guitar riffs.

5. The end is beautiful (7:45) : The titletrack alternates between dreamy and fiery featuring great play on the slide-guitar and electric piano along nice vocal harmonies and strong interplay between organ and drums. The final part includes brass sounds and a fiery, very compelling guitar solo.

6. So ready (5:01) : This song starts with sounds-effects, then a lush and bombastic sound and a swinging rhtyhm featuring the distinctive Hohner D6 clavinet sound.

7. The arc of descent (Dancing in a motel just est of Lincoln) (5:46) : This track is mainly dreamy with melancholical vocals and tender piano, gradually the sound becomes more and more dramatic with dynamic interplay between drums and organ and howling electric guitar.

8. Misery, not memory (9:03) : The final composition is very alternating and loaded with heavy guitar-riffs, bombastic organ and powerful vocals. A strong part is with a swinging piano, often blended with the electric guitar. Remarkable are the 'ambient samples', the final part is again swinging featuring strong drums and inspired vocals, what an excellent and varied singer this man is!

During the years Echolyn has turned into an unique progrock band. With this album they have prooved that this USA band is on the level of other great bands like Spock's Beard.HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

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Send comments to erik neuteboom (BETA) | Report this review (#50014) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Review by Menswear
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars I thought they were goners!?

Well, with this album, Echolyn is alive and doesn't seem to have lost of it's perk. All the elements that make them apart the others are still present and in a great amount. They still part from the herd again, giving a fresh change to the boring worn styles. Goergia Pie is a very good opening song, with the right amount of time changes and adrenaline. One thing about Echolyn is that they've never gone metal. They didn't even hardened their sound over the years. They still sound like it's 1991, with guitars and drums muffled like Pearl Jam did in Ten.

On the same path once again, vocally and musically, every song could've figured on As the World or Suffocating the Bloom, but they prove that a good recipe can be used without tasting completely the same. Some more elaborated keyboard work and (tad) higher heavyness can be tasted on Make Me Sway for example and some funky elements can be heard on So Ready.

This is not for the starter in progressive music, could get discouraged quickly; the songs are just so packed with time changes and melodies. But, for somebody who's been around the classics (Yes, Genesis, Pink Floyd....) and looking for a greater challenge: this is a great change of pace and/or will keep you digging longer than most of symphonic bands.

Why Echolyn is keeping the songs so complicated? Maybe they're also bored.

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Send comments to Menswear (BETA) | Report this review (#73282) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, March 27, 2006

Review by Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars The album gets started with "Georgia Pine" an energetic, fun song with a chorus that will stick in your head long after the song ends. "Heavy Blue Miles" features a lot of trumpet, sax and piano giving it a Jazz feel. The organ is also very prominant , not only on this song but throughout this record. "Lovesick Morning" is another song with a great catchy chorus, and the trumpet melodies are amazing. "Make Me Sway" is a darker song, although the chorus is lighter and smoother, I like it ! Good contrast.

The self titled song has outstanding vocals throughout and they are the highlight of this song. "So Ready" is a funky, almost Stevie Wonder type song, with sax and guitar standing out. "Arc Of Descent" gets better as it goes, although the lyrics are quite depressing. "Misery, Not Memory" the final song features lots of great hammond organ, and the song to me sounds better after the interlude part way through.

4 solid stars and highly recommended.

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Send comments to Mellotron Storm (BETA) | Report this review (#98518) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, November 12, 2006

Review by Prog Leviathan
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Echolyn returns to their song-based structure and cranks out an outstanding collection of complex and melodic rock with a darker tone. The playing and arrangements are all top- notch, but most of all I am impressed by the increased variety in vocal deliveries and in the album's greatly increased production values, which sounds much more clean and layered than their previous releases. The band uses more experimentation with their instruments as well as with their compositions.

As with most Echolyn albums, this one gets better the more one listens to it; unlike other Echolyn albums, the songs aren't so similar that one isn't discouraged in getting to that point.

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Send comments to Prog Leviathan (BETA) | Report this review (#126272) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, June 18, 2007

Review by Nightfly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
4 stars Echolyn's previous album, the brilliant Mei, only consisted of one song and here they return to a shorter song format although a couple are still around the ten minute mark. Echolyn play complex Symphonic Prog and particularly with their use of vocal harmonies are influenced by Gentle Giant. As might be expected the standard of musicianship is very high here, essential to follow the twists and turns of the complicated song structures that are a trademark of their sound. Drummer Paul Ramsey and Bassist Tom Hyatt are an excellent rhythm section playing off each other beautifully and playing with subtlety when necessary. Chris Buzby's Keyboards are an integral part of the Echolyn sound, much of the time having a nice retro feel with the use of Organ and electric/acoustic Piano. Brett Kull's guitar playing is also integral to their sound, rarely in your face but intricate and always inventive. He also compliments vocalist Ray Weston with some excellent harmony singing. The band isn't averse to bringing in other musicians when they feel it's required having employed string sections to good effect in the past. Here they make occasional use of Saxophone, Trumpet and Trombone.

The End Is Beautiful is not an immediate album and takes a few plays to get under your skin but its well worth persevering with. Highlights include the up tempo opener Georgia Pine and my own personal favourite Heavy Blue Miles.

The title track displays excellent use of dynamics showing that a song doesn't have to be twenty minutes long to fit in lots of moods and time changes, Echolyn doing it easily in seven and a half minutes. So Ready has a funky vibe to it though is one of the weaker tracks on the album but is more than compensated for by the following track, The Arc of Decent, a more laid back moment from the band but it builds nicely towards the end. The album closes well with the nine minute Misery, Not Memory again displaying the bands excellent grasp of the use of dynamics.

So whilst not being their best album, The End is Beautiful is a strong release and should keep fans of the band more than happy. However anyone just discovering Echolyn might be better starting with As the World or Suffocating the Bloom.

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Send comments to Nightfly (BETA) | Report this review (#152931) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Review by Garion81
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Wow! This was my introduction to Echolyn and it was a great first impression. The talent in this band is incredible. So many differnt styles are traversed on this CD played skillfully and the vocals while not stellar are right on key and not offenisve to the ears. I love the funkiness of So Ready and the title track while only 7+ minutes is truly epic in its stature. I could see the band closing a concert it with it. This is definatly an American band as there are real hard rock passages that compliment the pastoral and jazzier parts. In fact these guys invoke (or maybe the other way round) another modern American band IZZ. I love the trade offs between keybordist Buzby and guitarist Kull. Some really sweet sounds on acioustic guitar as well and great organ and paino parts as well give this an earthy flavor in parts. Really really sublime. Reminds me of really good Genesis jams with Hackett and Banks in places.

I really like this CD and look foward to getting more. Good to see that they will hitting the festival circuit again this year and will be at Calprog in October. IZZ and Echolyn on the same bill can't f-ning wait!

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Send comments to Garion81 (BETA) | Report this review (#170358) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, May 09, 2008

Review by Epignosis
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Eclectic Prog Team
5 stars Echolyn is a solid band with an unbelievable number of memorable tracks, and this album contains quite a few of them. I find that the musicianship is never less than stellar, and the more I listen to them, the more I appreciate their deep and thoughtful lyrics. While I do not believe the album is quite as amazing as previous efforts like Mei or Cowboy Poems Free, I think this is a grand achievement. Echolyn had already proven to be masters of the loose concept album (particularly with Cowboy Poems Free), and they pull it off again here. In general, the stunning music belies the depressing and bleak lyrical themes, which involve addiction, broken relationships, and suicide. Only a couple of the songs are somewhat less than perfect for me, but I can definitely live with that.

"Georgia Pine" A heavy Echolyn song that charges full speed ahead, this isn't what I was expecting at all! Yet the chorus satisfies in a way I also did not expect. The synthesizer and subsequent guitar solo are the highlights of the piece, and the darker part that ensues comes in almost without warning (like a sudden letdown that follows the high). The giddy music evokes the feeling of euphoria from "getting high," and lends to the song's intrigue.

"Heavy Blue Miles" Stark piano over drums and rising keyboards build until the song really gets going. The piano flourishes are great, but the subtle organ is also worthy of credit. Somewhat complex vocals jump in here and there, and the music, while by no means simplistic, might have some appeal to those new to progressive rock.

"Lovesick Morning" The longest song on the album begins with subdued drums and lightly distorted guitar. This is a slower piece with lovely piano and is probably one of the finest moments from this great American band. The vocal trade-offs are excellent (reminding me a bit of Mei), and the chorus is typical of the memorable business Echolyn is capable of crafting. The buildup in the ending is fabulous (the end really is beautiful), with a powerful host of instruments.

"Make Me Sway" A bitter song with gritty guitars and just as gritty an organ, it's loud and boisterous. Ray Weston's voice is vitriolic, singing somewhat esoteric lyrics about being lied to (but isn't that what many of us want- to be lied to?).

"The End is Beautiful" The introduction to the title track begins with maddening organ, drums, and granular bass. Despite such varied and excellent-crafted music, the lyrics regard the pain of a relationship plagued with one partner's addictions (which is apparently the overriding theme of the album). The lead guitar is absolutely gorgeous, and along with the vocals of the titular segment, this is another crowning moment for Echolyn. The chorus is nothing less than fascinating.

"So Ready" A funkier track with a nice bass groove and brass carrying on in the instrumental section, this rocker contains a bluesy and entertaining guitar solo.

"The Arc of Descent (Dancing in a Motel Just West of Lincoln)" After a darkly stunning guitar wash in the beginning, Brett Kull's soft and subdued voice is very disturbing given that he is singing about an impending suicide. Even the upbeat and pleasing music cloak the disheartening subject matter. The title comes from a line in "Lovesick Morning," giving credence to the notion of this being a loose concept album. It's no longer easy after hearing this song to look at the lonely and the depressed people in my life and not wonder if that's the last time I'll be seeing them.

"Misery, Not Memory" Heavy organ and drums begin this forceful closer. The music is layered and textured, although not as seamless as some of the other pieces. The lyrics reference Pink Floyd's 1979 double album ("Past side three of The Wall), discussing the complete decadence and unhealthiness of the protagonist (if there is indeed one protagonist). The song ends with a disembodied, almost ghostly voice and old guitar behind a thin wall of noise. After such a harrowing but memorable journey, do our mistakes eventually ruin life for us and others? And we left to wonder, just how is the end beautiful at all?

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Send comments to Epignosis (BETA) | Report this review (#221429) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Review by Evolver
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover & JazzRock/Fusion Teams
5 stars The End Is Beautiful is like an ogre... I mean an onion... it has layers. On the surface, it may sound like somewhat standard songs. But the more you listen to it... and I mean really listen to it... the more these layers unfold, and the majesty of the songs are revealed.

There is much written here that Echolyn is merely a Gentle Giant clone. But while there is clear evidence that they are influenced by GG, they are by no means a clone. Echolyn's music is some of the most unique in the prog world, with the unusual distiction of also being easy on the ears. It is that quality, I believe, that lulls many listeners into the assumption that the music is not highly complex. But delve down into it, and it is.

From the opening Georgia Pine, to the final track, you get amazing compositions of compound time signatures, swirling harmonies, and intricately entwined instumental arrangements. Even slow ballads, like Lovesick Morning is deceptively deep in those respects.

And So Ready is one of the steamiest hard rock tunes ever.

Don't pass this one by. And don't just listen once and put it away.

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Send comments to Evolver (BETA) | Report this review (#236514) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Review by lor68
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars One of the best albums from Echolyn, not as good as "Suffocating the Bloom", but close to their music edge of the nineties anyway...the unique- minor defect - is due to the fact that is a sort of solo album, mainly from Brett Kull , especially talking about the point of view of his composition... however the psichedelic tunes as well as the immediate avant gard pop songs (sometimes in the vein of "Mei" or also "Cowboy Poems free"), where the virtuosic features are not the main target, don't affect the good output of the album. I should say that's definitively their most original side, even though the whole album is more guitar oriented, by means of 13 short songs..well the lyrics are a little bit melancholy, obviously not sad, but quite reflective and intelligent too; as for all these reasons the present album can be recommended to the old fans and the new listener as well...for instance "Georgia pine" is a quite powerful tune, enriched with a remarkable guitar solo and a good "support" at the Hammond organ too...ok the piano is gentle but not so important within the composition, but nevermind! "Heavy blue miles" for example is a convincing episode along with its interesting changes in the mood or the various accelerated rhtymical patterns as well, without forgetting the chorus inside "The End is Beautiful", another interesting title track and the definitive "trademark" by Echolin...LONG LIVE ECHOLYN!!

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Send comments to lor68 (BETA) | Report this review (#257314) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Review by ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars "Echolyn" has never been my favourite band and this album is not the best one they have released. But it is still a decent one.

Same approach as usual: complex interplays but no great instrumental parts; decent vocals but no passionate ones to be distinguished. To summarize my opinion: "Echolyn" is a band that features skilled musicians who are playing an averagely complex music which could have sit better in the "Eclectic" section of this site.

To tell you my truth, symphony is quite an alien to their style. This album holds funky items which are far from the idea I have of the symph genre ("Heavy Blue Miles" or "So Ready"). I am quite disappointed by the evolution of the band. After the very good "Suffocating the Bloom" they have released only average to good albums as far as I am concerned.

I understand that it is not easy to survive as a US prog band; and this last album to date won't shake my mind. Some heavy stuff ("Make Me Sway") which is somewhat "Kansas" related; some jazzy ? symphonic mood with the title track (one of the best song available); and another attempt of heavy mix with "Misery, Not Memory" which closes this album. It won't be a dear one for sure!

Is this enough for me to recommend you this album? I guess not. But it is maybe due to the fact that I have listened to so many good to great albums in my long life.

Five out of ten; updated to three stars for this one. To their credit, I have to leave them some sort of genuine and personal sound but no more.

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Send comments to ZowieZiggy (BETA) | Report this review (#388830) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, January 28, 2011

Latest members reviews

2 stars In choosing to move to The End is Beautiful after having been highly impressed by Mei, I made two flawed assumptions. Firstly, that if Mei was so great then logic should follow that an album with a similarly high rating should be of the same calibre. Second, it would likely be in my best interest ... (read more)

Report this review (#401370) | Posted by R-A-N-M-A | Tuesday, February 15, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Echolyn are a band that I have come to love over time. I feel that they just get better with each successive album (although I do feel "Mei" is a masterpiece and therefore better than this album). Echolyn has a very unique sound that is hard to categorize. I would say that there is some passing s ... (read more)

Report this review (#379698) | Posted by natewait | Thursday, January 13, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars I have only just discovered Echolyn in the last month in spite of them having been in existence for 20 years. What's more, so far I have only heard this album and I write this without reference to any of their other work. In some regards, it seems unnecessary to do so. This album is so good, to ... (read more)

Report this review (#258639) | Posted by Makntak | Thursday, December 31, 2009 | Review Permanlink

3 stars This album follows on the excellent 'Mei' in somewhat the same style. These last two are heavier than any of the previous efforts. But, where 'Mei' is epic, TEIB has shorter songs. There are some nice bits and this is still a good album, but I still found it to be quite a letdown. The two best ... (read more)

Report this review (#171981) | Posted by digdug | Thursday, May 22, 2008 | Review Permanlink

4 stars If you expect that Echolyn - The End Is Beautiful will deliver another epic-like "Mei", then prepare to lower your expectation. TEIB is not concept-like typical symphonic prog as in Mei. TEIB tends to blend jazzier tune (Heavy Blue Miles,Lovesick Morning), swinging rock (Georgia Pine), to Symph Pr ... (read more)

Report this review (#146388) | Posted by Rizal666 | Monday, October 22, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars This band continues to amaze me with their playing and song writing skills. The End is Beautiful is a great modern rock album that starts of with 'Georgia Pine', a song that doesn't pull any punches. It's a big sounding rock number with a more fuller feel to it than I recall on earlier Echolyn ... (read more)

Report this review (#114718) | Posted by Dieselhead | Friday, March 09, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars I really have to admit that I truly underrated THE END IS BEAUTIFUL as I heard it for the first time. Too poppish, no prog-elements, but at least pretty good chant, was my imrpession. Far from it! The CD is pure (depressive) Progressive Rock that needs some time to find a way into your heart. Not ... (read more)

Report this review (#104975) | Posted by Badabec | Saturday, December 30, 2006 | Review Permanlink

3 stars One day, I bought "The End Is Beautiful" with some feeling and hope that I'll get a high quality music like their recent album, "Mei", a +48 minutes track!!! The moment when I bought "Mei", I was blown away because it's really a great epic. It was a good try and a successful experiment for the ... (read more)

Report this review (#98254) | Posted by Fernandi | Saturday, November 11, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Echolyn returns with a new album which is delightful. It seems that modern prog bands begin with a good album, but their newer albums often dissapoint the listener. However, Echolyn is certainly not like that! This band comes up with new ideas. They express their emothions successfully by sing ... (read more)

Report this review (#60375) | Posted by Dan Yaron | Thursday, December 15, 2005 | Review Permanlink

5 stars After just one listening of The End Is Beautful, I can confidently say this album is easily worth 5-stars and will become a future Echolyn classic in the same league as As The World and Mei. Filled with poignant, beautiful and clearly very personal lyrics which are delivered by the inimitabl ... (read more)

Report this review (#42281) | Posted by Johnny Marsh | Tuesday, August 09, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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