Fit For An Autopsy
Absolute Hope Absolute Hell
2nd October 2015 – eOne/Good Fight Music
01. Absolute Hope Absolute Hell
04. Murder In The First
05. Storm Drains
06. Ghosts In The River
07. Mask Maker
08. Hollow Shell
09. Out To Sea
10. False Positive
11. Swing The Axe
Perhaps better known for his work producing the likes of Thy Art Is Murder and Northlane - among many others – the third album from Will Putney’s band Fit For An Autopsy sees them push deathcore’s restrictive borders; Absolute Hope Absolute Hell is a refreshing sound in a genre that seems to have had its time.
Across the record, Putney shows off his prowess as a producer. Fit For An Autopsy have drawn influence from their peers and twisted the result into a relentless sound that is both engaging and versatile. Across numerous tours with their contemporaries they have studied what they like and dislike about their music, and it’s shaped a lot of the progression on this album. Indeed, Putney stated that they “approached the new album with that mentality, to break the mold of what we saw and heard, and to go outside of the limits of our genre.”This is certainly noticeable and there is a definite breath of fresh air in these songs, both in the style of riffs and the arrangement of the songs. For all the intensity and crushing heaviness you’d expect with any great deathcore, there are also elements of more atmosphere and eeriness.
Opening with the title track, the album wastes no time in delivering the equivalent of a bulldozer of intensity and showing off new vocalist Joe Bodalato’s bellowing growls. With an ominous blast of noise and vocals, and guitar leads offering ambience, the song kicks in with a crushing metal riff. The crushing breakdown with the album and song title as its reprise is a harrowing welcome to the album.
Putney also cites Gojira as a big influence in how they tested new ideas, and it shows. ”Saltwould” packs in riffs and thundering drums with a dooming chorus, and there’s even space for a emotive guitar solo during the bridge before the scrape ridden breakdown that sounds like Gojira playing deathcore. Their influence shines through again in “Ghosts in the River“, where FFAA pull in some expansive guitar stylings for a lighter passage where technical flourishes take precedence over the heavy riffing. These little intricacies certainly set them apart from the standard deathcore sound.
On the flip side, when a drum fill rolls “Wither” straight into a frenzy of intense vocals and blast beats, it’s clear that the band are still inherently heavy. Groovy riffage from the guitarists showcases an array of technical breakdowns that flow perfectly one after another. There’s a more epic and melodic side to them, but the song’s apocalyptic ending proves Fit For An Autopsy’s breath of fresh air has darkness yet..
The closing roars of “Mask Maker” are one of the album’s prime moments. The lyrics “dead fucking pessimist” epitomise the more negative themes of the album and bring the listener into a crushing breakdown. Bodalato’s varied vocals fit perfectly over the weaving passages and provide the slow down into the song’s intense breakdown.
Absolute Hope Absolute Hell boasts a wide variety of styles being thrown into a melting pot of riffs, breakdowns and atmosphere. It certainly seems as though studying their peers has paid off for Fit For An Autopsy, as they have managed to recreate the deathcore sound for a new generation, much in the way bands like Heart Of A Coward are doing for metalcore. Will Putney has made the most of their new vocalist’s range, working to further blend the styles that weave throughout the record. With some hard work and perseverance, Fit For An Autopsy could certainly make waves in the scene with material like this, and it would be excellent to see them continue to do so.