An Autumn For Crippled Children
These Dutch post-black metallers have crafted an album of depressive harshness and sorrowful beauty. The album begins steadily enough with To Set Sail To The Ends Of The Earth. A wall of Burzum-ish fuzzy guitars meets Katatonia-esque sadness as forlorn melodies shift slowly like drifts of snow in a slow-motion wind. A Gothic rock vibe emanates from the thick bass-lines of Tragedy Bleeds All Over The Lost. The clean guitar dancing over the main riff lends the song a Brave Murder Day feeling. The tempo quickens for some harsh black metal overtures to a tortured soul. Whereas A Dire Faith is dreary from the outset with despairing melodies and a stumbling pace, the song however becomes a bit mean-spirited as a rumbling double-bass drum crushes the listener and the screechy black metal vocals seer themselves across your shattered corpse. The grief-strewn notes that open I Beg Thee Not To Spare Me shift into lethargic gear for the morose riffing and synths that form the suffocating cocoon which encases me as the song progresses towards its inevitable climax of upward looking guitar work. (A wordy sentence to describe an overly wordy band) Blasting black metal spiraling slowly down into Katatonia inspired metallic mourning concludes the album on Never Shall Be Again. Though full of melancholic emotions and near-suicidal despair, the album is flat at times and is not nearly as experimental as I had hoped. That being said, Lost manages to reach into your chest and drown your heart with an ocean of tears. So in that respect, An Autumn For Crippled Children succeeds.