Review Summary: After The Burial mix themselves right out of contention.
The cheese of the rhetorical question always manages to become somewhat overbearing when compared to the premise at hand… but how many times has a band come so close to achieving a long deserved greatness only to trip and crawl over the line embarrassed and defeated？Any number of "sure things" come to mind giving premise to After The Burial's newest offering being something of quality and realised potential, except for a combination of bland musicianship and an obnoxious mixing. After The Burial continue the long tradition of falling proverbially short of the expectations set by a listening community that's seen just about everything "core" has had to offer.
But it's hard to lay the blame solely at the feet of one band, given just how it's the genre that created so much heartache for musicians and listeners alike. Evergreen
is an epitome of what established mainstream bands have to offer the modern day metal listeners. All the rage and testosterone fuelled screams amount to almost nothing when coupled with bandwagon trends and an inability to show growth. Even considering the fact that After The Burial now lean on a more low end focused noise than the band's origins they still somehow only manage to stick the tip in djent's dirty exit hole, hiding behind muddy toneless riffs… but hey, there's audible bass right？
Despite the album's overall shortcomings, Evergreen
isn't all a waste of time. Opening with "Behold The Crown" (and some of the cheekiest riff work of 2019) most listeners would be left to believe that After The Burial are about to unleash one hell of a thought out album. Clearly, it's just a matter of wishful thinking as "Exit, Exist" drowns out any definable sense of melody under toneless and muddy low end. It's a shame since the Minneapolis based act are quite capable of wielding their instruments of choice but choose to fall face first into the stigma created by modern metalcore. Those earlier moments of cheek and catchy riffery fall quickly into the meandering monotonous repetitive ideas and directionless songwriting. After The Burial it seems, ran out of a lot of their ideas even before they saw the dank must of a mate's practice space. It's a shame that an established act like After The Burial can't justify their existence past a few gracing pinch harmonics and angsty growls but even as "A Pulse Exchanged" makes an unquiet exit both the band and its listeners are well spent.