Release Date: 16th of February, 2018
TL;DR: ‘Vicious Pleasure‘ is a beautifully dark work of art. The instrumentals are well constructed and a perfect platform to support the incredible vocals. Consistency without becoming boring, and diversity without separating how tight-knit the tracklist is.
‘Vicious Pleasure‘ is the long anticipated second studio album from Sydney rockers Endless Heights. After an exciting run of singles, we finally have a release to follow their EP, ‘Teach You How to Leave‘, released way back in 2015.
The album opens with mysterious track Taste It, creeping up on you before leading directly into You Coward which showcases a number of different guitar tones that blend flawlessly amongst each other. The lyrics display vulnerability while the vocal deliveries push delicate aggression. These trends persist throughout a majority of the record; Toxic provides defined wonderful guitar leads and expressive melodies, while Drain takes a small step back from the aggressive vocals – however, the energy very much sticks pushing us towards the middle of the album.
Accompanied by an absolutely gorgeous music video (see below), Come A Little Closer is a gentle, inviting track. The ethereal leads resonating throughout the song are unsettling in the best kind of way. Your attention is divided among all the wonderful layers, but ultimately you’re always drawn back to the emotional vocal deliveries.
Pray I Fade is a wonderful mix of passive delivery, powerful instrumentals, grit and vocal styles. Each section flows perfectly between one another; the addition and removal of certain guitar tones does not feel out of place and solidifies how distinct each part of the song is meant to be.
Goldleaf‘s introduction is extremely impactful and energetic. Vocal contrasting is strong on this track and is used very effectively. The melody in this song is absolutely lovely, and the progression is smooth and poignant. This has to be my favourite cut from the list – the delivery is on point and combines a number of elements the band has shown they can use well.
Shiver Down is a great display of the manipulation of energy levels through vocal deliveries and the addition/absence of instruments. This track is a good intermediate between the tones of the tracks it sits between.
Paralyse, the last single to be released, is easily the softest cut on the album. It is very vocal driven, however – much like the rest of the album – the instrumentals really help support and push the emotions being evoked during this performance.
In contrast, the next track Run develops into a very heavy, unsettling song. A heart-wrenching tale told through grounding vocals. Guitar work during the instrumental breaks are heavy and the drums are loud and pounding. This mix allows for one of the most impressive tracks on the record, the build-up is insane and the deliveries are perfectly varied.
The album’s closing track, Heart of Your Life, is another amalgamation of the sounds and styles that have been presented throughout this project. A great summary for a fantastic record.
Production on this record was well put together and the mixing was fantastic. Thematically, ‘Vicious Pleasure‘ is dark but these feelings are displayed with appropriate emotion and beautiful instrumentals. The layering throughout the tracklisting was amazing, each song felt full or void wherever it was intended to and your attention was directed in the same manner. The vocal deliveries were next level.
Overall, everything was exactly where it needed to be. There was an adequate amount of consistency with enough switch-ups and diversity to prevent any boredom. This record is beautiful, a job well done to Endless Heights.
Endless Heights go on tour around Australia towards the end of April/beginning of March with Harbours and Paradise Club – be sure to check them all out! Tickets available from their website.