After The Burial
Wolves Within


3.5
great

Review

by bubbahotep92 USER (3 Reviews)
December 16th, 2013 | 250 replies


Release Date: 12/17/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: In which strides are made, promise is shown, and banality rears it's ugly head.

After the Burial certainly have been busy since the release of In Dreams in 2010. The album that opened them up to many new fans simultaneously drove older die-hards away with the toned down style, and ever since then the game plan seems to have been to win them back. Relentless tours playing mostly older material, rerecording a select group of songs off of the bands first release, It's almost like the band seems to understand that it might be better to have the hardcore fan base securely in their court.

And this trend continues strongly with Wolves Within, the newest release from the Minnesota Djentcore Djiants (see what I did there.) The feel of the album is very much trying to recapture the magic of Rareform, the groups strongest release to date. Faster, heavier, more technical and just more fun than In Dreams, After the Burial have really shown that they haven't lost what made them stand out originally. The songwriting is tighter than ever, with tracks transitioning from breakneck riffs to djenty grooves to powerful solos naturally. Anti-Pattern, the opening song, comes right out of the gate with a groovy base that gets you engaged and Of Fearful Men keeps the attention with the fastest and most technical riffs since Berzerker.

But here we get to what plagues the album, which is inconsistency in quality from track to track. While Disconnect, the fourth track, is the high point of the album and possibly the band's career, the two songs that pad it are both for lack of a better term standard. Both Pennyweight and Nine Summers sound like copy and paste boards, taking good ideas from the bands past releases and gluing together songs. They aren't BAD, but they certainly don't stand out either, and after listening to the album the first few times you still won't really remember the songs. They just don't leave a lasting impression. Virga picks up the slack with some top notch riffing and even a guest spot from original vocalist Nick Wellner sure to tickle the hardcore fan base. After this though, the rest of the album suffers a similar fate as before. Neo Seoul is the "Melodic Track" on the album and it has good ideas but ends up being less memorable than say Aspirations. Pairse is more groovy grooves, and while i appreciate the small keyboard section, it doesn't quite bring the song up enough. Ending track A Wolf Amongst Ravens is more of the same, a semi interesting djent track with not much going on. All of these songs offer something up that is decent, and all are better than the worst parts of In Dreams, but they just leave a lot to be desired with other tracks showing such promise.

The other elephant in the room is the production quality of the album. Now i know that for most people they don't even pay attention to the actual sound of the album from a mixing standpoint, but on this release especially it is noticeable. Guitar tones are tinny and inconsistent, the bass mix is all over the place and the drums sound highly compressed. This seems to be a trend with Sumerian as The Faceless's new release had similar production issues. It's not a huge problem and the quality of the songs over-rides it, but it is definitely an annoyance.

So at the end of the day what have After the Burial accomplished here? Wolves Within is a good album, full of good songs. The band recalls their heyday while looking to the future. But is it an amazing or even great album? Some stale ideas and some production problems keep it out of that league. What it does show however is that After the Burial are not finished and that they still have potential to improve. Just the fact that they were able to learn from past mistakes and implement noticeable changes is huge, much more than many bands are able to do. If you like them already you will like this album. If you like this kind of music you will like this album. But if you're looking for the next album of the year or the next step in music's progression, look elsewhere.

Recommended Tracks:
*Anti-Pattern
*Of Fearful Men
*Disconnect
*Virga


user ratings (214)
Chart.
3.5
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Brostep
Staff Reviewer
December 16th 2013


3450 Comments


put page breaks between paragraphs but otherwise good review

bubbahotep92
December 16th 2013


19 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

How would one put these page breaks which you speak of


bubbahotep92
December 16th 2013


19 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Oh yeah there's a stream on Youtube. http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLH22-xSMERQqkZJBwjScNJRQ5HH8219U_

accompliceofmydeath
December 16th 2013


4218 Comments


I used to really dig their first album. Might give this a shot eventually.

Digging: The Swarm - Parasitic Skies

MrHigh
December 16th 2013


68 Comments


I just cant get over the production. Going from In Dreams to this...

Duckman118
December 16th 2013


303 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Can't wait to give this album a spin. Also enjoyed In Dreams quite a bit. I found To Carry You Away
and Sleeper to be pretty sweet tracks, but other than that was pretty forgettable. Glad this is an
improvement.

The ending breakdown in Anti Pattern is fucking crazy.

ianjulian
December 16th 2013


630 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

breakneck riffs to djenty grooves to powerful solos naturally.

JustinKing
December 16th 2013


1300 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Will check this soon. I'm not a huge fan of them, but I've enjoyed each of their releases a fair bit.

VanFullOfSpooks
December 16th 2013


3 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Good review, I agree with most of what you said but Nine Summers is an awesome song lol

Digging: The Contortionist - Language

Kyyzen
December 17th 2013


190 Comments


Great album. Disconnect, Virga, Nine Summers, Parise and A Wolf Amongst Ravens are my favorite. The others are really good too though Xp

climactic
December 17th 2013


18965 Comments


grooves hard

second half of this album is so much better than the first

TenSecondsToThink
December 17th 2013


1230 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Nice review, very easy to understand. Gonna listen to this soon.

TooLateToGoBack
December 17th 2013


1764 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Production really prevents this album from being anything other than "good".

No idea what they were thinking during the mixing process.

Digging: Pianos Become the Teeth - Keep You

Evreaia
December 17th 2013


4040 Comments


Band always has cool artwork, but damn they suck sooooo much.

conesmoke
December 17th 2013


5217 Comments


lol

Tyrael
December 17th 2013


20879 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

m/

Digging: Darkspace - Dark Space III I

SnailTRAIL
December 17th 2013


903 Comments


lol

TenSecondsToThink
December 17th 2013


1230 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Nine Summers and Neo Seoul are great.

justajammin
December 17th 2013


2 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

The guest vocalist on Virga is Nick Wellner, who was featured on the album Forging a Future Self.

Digging: disconnect, nine summers, of fearful men

DarthHideous1
December 17th 2013


61 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0 | Sound Off

Disconnect, Of Fearful Men, Neo Seoul, and Nine Summers are the shit.



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