The screaming in metal these days is an interesting phenomenon. It’s like a big idiot standing in front of a microphone just hollering gibberish. But, the motif endures and lots of bands feature screaming. Even more interesting, it’s not all idiotic. Autumn Black’s particular brand of screaming and singing mixes well. Plus, there’s no doubting the thunderous power of their lethal metalcore riffs.
Beneath the Shadows, their first full length record, is an intense metal assault. Their industrial power is showcased in virtually every track. “Salvation” blasts through you with machine gun caliber speed. “Ashes” is incessantly thick and blistering. Next is “Nameless” and it’s got the same powerful rhythm as the rest, and also features an unforgettable chorus. The fourth track, “In the Name of a Rose,” is a tricky interlude. It’s a beautiful and haunting instrumental that lasts less than a minute (by two seconds) and almost makes you think the band is letting out a softer side. But nay, the battle rages on with the next track. And the next. And the next. And so on and so forth. The music never lets up.
There is sadness and sometimes a sense of doom in the words of their songs, yet they also have a positive outlook. “Ashes” proclaims: “We all shall perish/from ashes we arise.” Not a groundbreaking philosophy by any means, but it sounds cool in the song.
Maybe that’s the best way to describe Autumn Black: they sound cool. The music isn’t hateful or maudlin, it’s epic and moving. Beneath the Shadows is an album that sounds experienced, as if it has always been part of metal and always will.
The band obviously understands metal. Their songs never letup and the lyrics are strong, intelligent and synchronized well with the music for the most part. They’ve the musical savvy and the talent to be a great band. They are currently in the studio working on their second full length record.