After the Burial
In Dreams

It’s time to chalk another one up to the Midwestern metal scene with Minnesota’s After the Burial and their second release on Sumerian Records, In Dreams. This is definitely going to be a favorite for fans of the math metal variety with Meshuggah inevitably being the prime example that comes to mind. And rightfully so, as their influence is definitely the first thing you’ll notice with the album’s opening track “My Frailty”, which hits it off with a shrill single note rhythm then is matched with the ever growing popular f# string of an 8-string guitar.

Not to worry though, these guys realize there’s more to the instrument than just that extra low octave, for just a little halfway through the track they come in with a smooth power chorded bridge that’s keeping rhythm for a solo that mixes a few different genres in about a 45 second span. It goes from tremolo picking to a few bluesy licks to a dash of sweep picking as well as a small Mötley Crüe-esque medley and ends in straight drums and speed picking which heads straight back to the low noted rhythm that carries the song to its end.

With “My Frailty”, you get a pretty good representation of what’s to come with the rest of the album as far as rhythms, leads, and break downs go. However in the tracks “Pendelum”, “To Carry You Away”, and “Promises Kept” they do start off with some pretty soft and melodic, clean and acoustic intros  and clean vocals (of which there are noticeably more than on their debut) which then kicks into much more upbeat tempos with enough heavy breakdowns to please any fan of just about any genre of metal. One more track that really caught my attention was “Encased in Ice” which comes in with a rhythm composed of natural harmonics and has a beat that one just can’t help but nod your head to in quarter notes. In Dreams is also the first original work done with the bands new vocalist, Anthony Notarmaso. I say original work due to the fact that while he was on the re-release of their predecessor album Rareform it was only a re-recording with him as well as recorded live drum tracks as well.

So overall, After the Burial have delivered a safe album that does not quite build on the potential they showed on Rareform, but they are still definitely a group to keep your eye on, even though this album doesn’t quite have anything that really stands out that can separate them too much from other run-of-the-mill new modern, techy heavy metal bands that are surfacing every day. Though they had some of their thunder stolen by the likes of The Contortionist and label mates Periphery, After the Burial will still appease younger fans of metal that enjoy the rest of Sumerians Records roster.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Derek Taylor
February 1st, 2011


  1. Commented by: Nick Taxidermy

    any genre? even black metal, which isn’t known for breakdowns

  2. Commented by: jerry

    if a review has the word “breakdown” in it, usually that’s a good point to stop reading.

  3. Commented by: calsy

    If someone comments about ‘breaddowns’ being lame, usually it means hes a douche.

  4. Commented by: Reignman35

    Not bad but I didn’t enjoy it nearly as much as their first one… way too many screamy/raspy vocals for my taste, and this is a genre I really enjoy save for that one aspect of it.

  5. Commented by: faust666

    This album is somewhat “safe” compared to Rareform but I still enjoyed the hell out of it…

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