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Release Review: After The Burial – Wolves Within

If there’s anything that Minnesota riff-wizards After The Burial have presented to us, it’s that their excellence in weaving a typically formulaic sequence never falters. Case in point: the Sumerian five-piece have always been a guilty pleasure of mine, dating back to the genius of Rareform and despite a seemingly held-back but equally intense excursion with 2010’s In Dreams, After The Burial have returned with what they simply do best; giving us all riffs to play back in our heads over and over again.

Wolves Within is just that, it is permeated with groove and prolific in riff quantity. To those who have never embarked upon After The Burial prior to this, let’s put it this way – djent and hardcore with elements of math metal and progressive metal is always a delightful listen from time to time, but it will never break the mould of what is currently par for the course. After The Burial however, are, frankly, amazing musicians and their sound is always refreshing and slightly more innovative and memorable than many of their djent counterparts.

And it is with Wolves Within, that After The Burial have nailed their exceptionally tight and carefully crafted presence. The guitars are crisp and clean, whether they are dishing out a viciously filthy polyrhythmic breakdown in “Pennyweight” or a clean, classical passing interlude in “Of Fearful Men”, the technical proficiency is one of the more impressive qualities of the album. Not to mention the groovy beatdowns followed by arguably one of the finest melodic leads I’ve heard in a long time with “Disconnect” – easily the most memorable song on the album. Fans of Arch Enemy and In Flames would be proud with that beautiful (I don’t use that word often!) outro.

It’s hard to find a drawback with Wolves Within, because while it may lack the mix quality that made In Dreams such a fine Sumerian release, we are, to be quite honest, spoiled for riff value. The recording quality may not be as strong as with After The Burial’s previous release, but after several listens a bad riff cannot be found. Needless to say the drum progression and technicality has improved, whilst the notable, echoic screams from frontman Anthony Notarmaso remain ferocious and well-lyricised as always.

Impressive dynamics and loyal fans of After The Burial will be happy with Wolves Within, as it’s a release that presents itself as an aggressive, vicarious journey that satisfies our desire for progression and technical fluency. And riffs. So many riffs.

After the Burial - Wolves Within

Tracklisting:
1. Anti-Pattern
2. Of Fearful Men
3. Pennyweight
4. Disconnect
5. Nine Summers
6. Virga
7. Neo Seoul
8. Parise
9. A Wolf Amongst Ravens

After the Burial

After The Burial are:
Anthony Notarmaso – Vocals
Trent Hafdahl – Guitar
Justin Lowe – Guitar
Lee Foral – Bass
Dan Carle – Drums

More After The Burial:
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About Dan Walton (155 Articles)
Dan (or Danuel as many know him) is the newest member of the editorial team of MetalRecusants, after being a contributing writer for a few years. He spends his days sending emails, editing, drinking coffee or listening to some form of Australian metal. He can usually be spotted wearing his Northlane windbreaker around the mean streets of Shoreditch. Find him on Twitter: @DanuelKC - he tweets about sports a lot.

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