Scott Endres has been a busy man over the years with MAKE, which most of you will be familiar with, and The Pod, which you may or may not be familiar with. The Pod has existed right alongside MAKE and is the place Endres goes to make music that is completely devoid of any outside interferences and completely on his own terms. His latest album, The Pod, is a collection of personal favorites over the last few years and a couple new tracks, all of which are an amalgamation of drone, electronic, ambient and even black metal. But it works, and tremendously so.
If searching for something different is a journey you find yourself on from time to time The Pod has plenty to offer. One trip through their Bandcamp page could take a few days to fully engage with and piece it all together. But the best part is, it’s a journey of discovery that’s not only fully engrossing but ultimately rewarding. Lush soundscapes collide with electronic loops while cavernous black metal vocals run head first into ambient patterns and through it all nothing feels forced. The music guides itself to where it needs or wants to go and the results speak for themselves.
The reimagining of older tracks breathe newfound life and vigor to each. “The Analeptic Ritual” shimmers with clearer sound along its robust 14 minutes of drone, parts of which wouldn’t be out of place on the next MAKE album. “Lifegiver” was a monster on 2015’s Land of Bread and Water but here the tiny details buried amidst the notes make it sound even bigger. With time invested though, “That Was New York” has garnered the highest play-count. It’s loud and abrasive yet feels melancholic and somber with a deeply toned synth line that repeats throughout. And the drumming, while seemingly wild and chaotic at first, is some of the best heard to date.
It’s no secret that Endres is fed up with the political climate as of late. And as stated before, his music is created nearly in a vacuum. But that doesn’t change the fact that this album feels like an explosion of emotions that if left unattended could boil over into something truly unhealthy. This leaves no doubt that The Pod is Endres’ way of recoiling when life or life’s circumstances go terribly awry. Anger and negativity gives way to catharsis and if an artist can reach that place while connecting with the listener on the same wavelength then their art is a success. This is exactly what The Pod has done here.
As much as The Pod is a journey into the mind of its creator it is also a journey into the depths of our own minds, if we are willing to let it take us there. And what more can you ask of any artist than to challenge us as listeners and broaden our musical horizons? The Pod does this and it truly is worth every minute of the journey.