Great God Pan

Endura - Great God Pan ©1997 Elfenblut
1. Oriflamme
2. Alpha Wolf
3. Dark Face Of Eve
4. From Sickening Skies
5. Sucking The Sour Vine
6. Sperm of Metals
7. The Truth Is A Sharp Knife
8. Saturns Tree
9. A Black Dog Crossed My Path
10. Hymn To Pan
11. The Battle Song Of Endura

Dwelling very unmajestically in the land of neo-classical funeralesque Casio-created music, Endura's Great God Pan is the type of disc that elicits some minor interest but never quite fulfills on what the group might hope to accomplish. Naturally that goal is greatly obscured and probably quite irrelevant, but the point is this album is one of those things you don't actively dislike, but can never quite grow to regard as "breathtaking" or a landmark release in this genre. Using synthesizer created orchrestration, sparse percussion (probably not exactly organic either), Endura's musical ideas are somewhat interesting but again, don't quite pull off a hat trick. A lot of Great God Pan comes across as late 80s era In the Nursery in a sour mood or a watered down Die Verbannten Kinder Eva's. There's occasional dramatic vocalizing and some soft tone ambient sounds ("From Sickening Skies"), but nothing that really sticks out. On tracks like "Sperm of Metals", the general melody is fairly interesting but the impression given is that a lot more fleshing out is necessary as the minimalistic instrumental approach suggests the band wasn't sure how to add to the music. They do come closer to fleshing things out on "Saturns Tree", which adds a good countermelody to the somber keyboard dirge working below. But on the ending track "The Battle Song of Endura", the schlock spooky deep narrator is just too hokey to take seriously and the ominous effect of the medieval pounding drums is quickly dispelled.

Great God Pan is by no means a horrible album. Rather, it is simply not a completely realized piece of work. Given that there are better neoclassical bands making music, Endura becomes nothing more than a footnote with this release.

Review by John Chedsey

Review date: 06/2000

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