For All We Know, Self Titled – CD Review

Although this is the first album from For All We Know, the musicians behind it are anything but novice.  Guitarist Ruud Jolie took some time out from his primary project Within Temptation to embark upon this independent project.  In this project Ruud not only utilizes the electric, acoustic and bass guitars but also the mandolin.  He is joined by vocalist Wudstik, Kristoffer Gildenlow on the fretless bass guitar, Leo Margarit on drums,  Thijs Schrijnemakers on a Hammond, and Marco Kuypers on keys (Rhodes and Harmonium).  This interesting blend of musicians and instruments are also accompanied by a host of guest musicians lending their vocal and guitar talents to this debut album.  Guest musicians include another of Within Temptation, Sharon den Adel, John Wesley from Porcupine Tree, Ruud Houweling of Cloudmachine and Daniel Gildenlow from Pain of Salvation are just a few to mention; an amazing collection of artists has come together on this one 12-song album.

The album has many rises and falls throughout the array of metal they have created.  Each song possesses its own unique soul; no two tracks could be mistaken for another.  The tracks range from heavy bass lines and pounding drums, to the ethereal and ambient.  The guest vocals lend that extra eeriness and unity to tracks like “Keep Breathing”.  The song begins with gentle piano and soft angelic vocals that give rise to a host of other voices and energies filling your ears with something otherworldly.  The guitar work on “Down on My Knees” is just inspiring.  The melodic nature of songs such as “Tired and Ashamed” engrosses you in the lyrics as stories unravel before you in sweet harmony.

This album has been well produced (Ruud Jolie) and well performed and is a great addition to any prog rock/metal/rock ‘n roll-lovers collection.