Autumn's Dawn are labeled as a depressive black metal band, formed by Germ and exAustere frontman Tim Yatras (going by the name "Sorrow"). The band formed in 2013, and has one EP prior to this record.
From the get-go, the label of Depressive Black Metal doesn't seem to really ring true. There are other bands within the genre that feature a much more depressive sound and feeling with the music, as this tends to lend itself to perhaps a darker shoegaze style Similar to Germ. Regardless of the label for the music, this is a pretty enjoyable listen. The song titles are certainly on the "depressive" side with titles such as The Ashes Of a LIfe and The Grace Of a Grave among others.
Musically, the band again sounds a bit on the shoegaze side. Loud, wall of sound, bright guitars, with plenty of effects, as well as some catchy, mood setting drumming. The vocals go from a clean vocal to a harsh shriek between, and sometimes during each song. Much like the prior Germ album, the clean vocals can be hit or miss. They seem to be a bit too "try hard" at moments (When The Sun Sets For The Last Time being a great example), and at other times, really hit home (like on Blank Stare, Dead Eyes) but the harsh vocals are really nice throughout. They do add some atmosphere and feeling to the record without coming off as too bland or disingenuous. Back to the guitars, they do have some really pretty moments, and the solos on the record are a real highlight here.
The last two tracks on the record seem to really be a big highlight on the album. Through The Rusted gates Of Time features some gruffer, or perhaps more "anguished" sounding clean vocals and some really harsh screams that really add to the sound. While the lyrics were not available, you can make out lines such as "drink the poison" and "ends my life" which do drive home the depressive angle the band has taken. The track also features probably the best riffing and drumming on the record, making it a real standout. The final track, takes us back to the more shimmery guitars but continues with the great clean vocal/harsh vocal combination, making it another standout on the album.
The Production on the record is also a very nice treat for the most part. The vocals are clear and audible in the mix, the guitars are very clear as well. The drumming feels a bit low, as does the bass, but they are audible and the drums do add a nice undertone to the rest of the music. Further, the sound on the album is very pretty, but does have a bit of "roughness around the edges" that makes the album feel more important and real. There's a fine line between having a solid, clear production and sounding mechanical. This album, luckily, falls on the clear and solid side, and not the mechanical side.
This album seems to be really misrepresented. Again, the "depressive" aspect is much more seen visually (in the song titles) than actually heard most of the time. However, taking the album as it is, which is more of a dark shoe gaze, the album is quite nice. The solos are again, a real highlight, and the first 4 tracks and the last two are real stand outs. It's everything else in between that suffers and drags the album down. There just ends up being not as much creativity in the songwriting and composition to make the middle of the record worth it. Had this been released as an EP, this would be an easy buy. As it is, it's an album worth checking out for a few songs for sure, but listen before purchasing for sure.
Killing Songs :
The Ashes of a LIfe, Grace of a Grave, Through The Rusted gates Of Time, Gone
|Neill quoted 70 / 100|
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