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Album Reviews : At The Soundawn – Red Square: We Come In Waves

By on July 8, 2008

After forming in 2000 as simply a fun band between mates, and recording a 5 track demo in 1 day, At The Soundawn have finally released their debut “album” (I use that word loosely as the release is only 29 minutes long) and the wait was well worth it. Red Square is chock full of powerful melodies that range from heavy, distorted guitars with strong hardcore/post vocals over the top, to subtle, almost ambient sections. This isn’t an overly original release, they certainly aren’t breaking any new ground here, but they have done a fantastic job of making an enjoyable album nonetheless.

The music sounds extremely similar to Pelican in parts, with mainly the vocals separating the two. This isn’t really a bad thing though, because they don’t sound like a cheap imitation band. They may have a very similar sound, but the quality of the writing and playing is right up there with Pelican and other more well-known bands of the genre.

Opener “Slight Variations” is a perfect example of the way the band combines the extremes of heavy post-metal and softer, clean material seamlessly. At times the band almost instantly switches extremes, but at the same time it sounds like it all fits together perfectly. “Submerged” showcases the bands slower, heavier material which sounds damn powerful and it’s where the band really shines when it comes to heavier material. “Sundown in Rome” is a beautiful little interlude featuring soft, clean guitars which eventually evolves into some spacey ambient sounds and heavy (but quiet) distortion before storming into “Rain Falls”, the heaviest track on the album, featuring some of Mirco Migliori’s most powerful harsh vocals, as well as some fantastic mellow clean singing.

This is the type of album that sounds better the louder it is. There are many subtleties and little additions to the music, whether it be trumpets, vocals that blend into the background, ambient backing sounds, or even just a simple, quiet cymbal beat in the background, that gives the music a lot of depth. With the volume turned down, a lot of these subtleties can be missed because the mix makes the quieter parts very quiet indeed.

There’s not a bad track on “Red Square”. Each song is just as strong as any other, with every song having its own individual highlights. This is definitely a band that’s worth a listen if you enjoy anything related to the post-metal genre. 7/10

For fans of: Pelican, Isis, Rosetta

Band: At The Soundawn
Album: Red Square: We Come In Waves
Year: 2008
Genre: Post-metal/Alternative
Label: Lifeforce Records
Origin: Italy
www.myspace.com/atthesoundawn

Track Listing:
1. Slight Variations
2. Submerged
3. One Day Before
4. Phone Will
5. Sundown in Rome
6. Rain Falls <- Reviewers Choice
7. Frames of You

About

Mitch Booth is the owner, designer and grand overlord of Metal Obsession. In the few seconds of spare time he has outside of this site, he also hosts a metal radio show over on PBS 106.7fm in Melbourne (Australia) and organises shows under the name Untitled Touring. You should follow him on Twitter.