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  • Writer's pictureNick

Worthwhile Labor

"Someday my labor will have some worth,' Scott screams over frenetic instrumentals. I'm not sure they have to wait at all before that day comes.

Before & After, the new record from Auteur starts with a solid indicator of what this record is about. "Old House" calls the listener with corybantic guitar rhythms reminiscent of bands like Every Time I Die. It's heavy and energetic and it's groovy in a way that a lot of metalcore fails to achieve.

From there, the album puts you on a rollercoaster that teeters the listener from party peaks to somber dips in a pace that never bores. The first four tracks burn bright with white-knuckle-tight fervor. Each one casts the listener into a aural whirlwind providing little safety or respite until the fifth track puts the them carefully back on the ground.

The melancholic "Repressor" steeps the middle of the record in earnest abstraction. It's a heavy and heartfelt ballad begging to be played live. And clocking in at the longest song, when the next track shifts the gear back up, it almost serves as a reminder of what you're listening to. This is a metal album, welcome back.

"Strawman," one of my personal favorites of the record, showcases the band's range. With a deceptively calm intro, the first verse hammers in like a machine gun. The pre-chorus and chorus, however, draw from post-hardcore influence channeling the sound of La Dispute. It's a song that pingpongs back and forth between heavy, at times grimy metalcore, and an almost screamo sound without sacrificing its own identity. The song itself is a carom, striking two sounds at once and both hit the pocket.

The album finishes like a deadlift, solid and arresting. Strong riffing, emphatic drums, and vocals that deserve to fill a stadium. And as soon as it's all over, you find yourself hitting the ground for another rep. The labor has worth right now.

You can pick up Before & After on their Bandcamp.


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