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Autumnal - The End Of The Third Day (2014) - Review

Band: Autumnal
Album title: The End Of The Third Day
Release date: 17 October 2014
Label: Cyclone Empire

01. A Tear From A Beast
02. One Step… And The Rest Of Our Lives
03. The Head Of The Worm
04. Man´s Life Is The Wolf´s Death
05. Resigned To Be Lived
06. The Storm Remains The Same
07. Don´t Leave Me Now (Supertramp cover)
08. Father´s Will

It's that time of the year again when the most melancholic feelings come to surface, the nature is slowly preparing for a winter sleep and so the search for a comfort with music within four walls has begun, and no matter what in this season also the music we are searching and listening to has often something warm, melancholic, yet tender and most of the times comfortable in its core. Spanish melancholic doom/dark metallers Autumnal are certainly one of the bands that could be appropriate right for this, and if you loved and found your peace in albums like are Judgement from Anathema, Night Is The New Day or Viva Emptiness from Katatonia, Second World by The Foreshadowing or in anything My Dying Bride, The Chant, October Tide, Hanging Garden and similar dark-atmospheric-melancholic bands ever did than this is some serious stuff for you. I admit that it is for me and it keeps me hooked for quite some time now. The End Of The Third Day is one of those albums that gets best consumed in the solitude, with your favorite drink in hands while the soft sparkly lights of candles draw some silhouettes on the wall in complete absence from outside effects.

Autumnal are not a newcommer on the scene, those who follow the doom scene must be aware that this band is active since 1998 and is by many considered to be the cornerstone of Iberian metal. Unfotunately Autumnal since then granted us only a couple of demos and one full-lenght album, Grey Universe, released in 2006. From then until now everything was silent in the Spanish camp and somehow the surprise is even bigger as out of nothing a monumental monster album like The End Of The Third Day is announced, an album that in a way follows the path that Autumnal outlined with their debut album, I'm talking about epic melodic doom metal full of heart rendering crushing passages. It's true that with this new work Autumnal's music sounds even better structured, has much more flow and can suck you even deeper in the melancholic state of mind with music and feelings that must come straight from the heart, but yet it has kind of a spark, in all that sadness that speaks through deep tones there's life in it, kind of a ray of hope, a healing touch.

The End Of The Third Day comes served in eight let said epic songs that together sums more than 70 minutes in lenght. The song compositions are fortunately very well structured and each song and with that the whole album gets a nice pathos that brings no boredom. Gentle and soothing melodies have many twists and with powerful doomed crushing walls of sounds forms a highly dynamic drive. Vocalist Javier de Pablo with his soul rending vocals does a perfect job, when singing clean he sounds like a perfect mix between Jonas Renkse (Katatonia), Vincent Cavanagh (Anathema) and Marco Benevento (The Foreshadowing), while in some of the more extreme parts his growls become similar to Aaron Stainthorpe from My Dying Bride. It's really breathtaking when the classically influenced sorrowful strings (violins, viola, cello,...) and soft piano comes in the picture, deepening the atmosphere like not many times is heard, just listen how everything is so perfectly balanced in, to point out just a couple, "One Step… And The Rest Of Our Lives", "The Head Of The Worm" and the sorrowful closing one "Father's Will". Great guitar riffs and timeless melodies, also some exqusite leads and memorable hooks must bring some shivers down your spine. The mind blowing rhythm section with exceptional drumming gives a lot of heaviness to each composition and consider everything spiced with that mysterious Mediterranean charm, like in the case of Moonspell to point out at one band, than you know what I'm talking about.

It's interesting how the band despite of the lenght of most of the tracks can keep the listener interested by many tempo changes, mood changes, still always keeping everything as much as possible dark and melancholic. Also some parts that are on the edge of post-rock, even so called metal-gaze, add a lot in the final picture. While listening through the album you'll encounter a beautiful cover of early 80s hit, "Don't Leave Me Now", originally performed by legendary English progressive/art/pop rock band Supertramp. Despite the fact that this album lacks in originality everything still connects so well, it keeps the mesmerizing flow from beginning till the end, thus renders a perfect emotional soundtrack for this autumn. Not to mention that the production and mastering of the album is done by well known Jens Bogren (Paradise Lost, Opeth, Katatonia,...) and does some favours to them. The only thing that works out somehow silly is rather childish cover artwork, but that's just a minor thing. Recommended for all the suffering souls out there, may you find some rest with this beautiful piece of music.

Review written by: T.V.
Rating: 8,5/10