Deaf Autumn – The Shape

Rating: 2.5/5
Distributor/label: This Is Core
Distributor/label URL: https://www.thisiscoremusic.com
Released: 12/01/18
Buy Album: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/the-shape/1325783017
Band Website: http://www.deafautumn.com/

Band line-up:

Davide Ricci – Guitar & Vocals,
Davide Torti – Bass & Vocals,
Alessio Scala – Guitar,
Antonio Paliotta – Drums.

Tracklisting:

1. S.O.S.
2. I Won’t Run Away
3. Over Me
4. A Thousand Broken Hearts
5. The Shape
6. Without A Shelter
7. Getting Worse
8. Love Pretender
9. Set No Evidence
10. Till The End

Review

There’s something really rather wholesome about a band’s origins stemming from a friendship. Where many acts in pop are manufactured and drafted together, rock has a long and storied history of friends gathering together to rock out and revel in the good times that music brings – rather lovely, don’t you think? There’s a certain warmth that permeates a record made between mates that you just don’t get elsewhere and makes us all warm and fuzzy inside (if you’re the feeling type, that is). It’s this that gives DEAF AUTUMN’s sophomore release, “The Shape” a welcome reprieve.

By and large, “The Shape” is a simple, effective romp of rock riffs, hardcore barks and uplifting post-hardcore choruses that will awaken the senses and tempt even the stoniest heart into a little sing along. From the beginnings of “I Won’t Run Away”, these Italians roar away with abandon and a glorious uplift. Chunky power chord riffs thundering away below caustic hardcore shouts and soaring melodic vocals are the name of the game throughout the album, and it’s a dependable game at that. The album’s title track is blessed with some melodic guitar phrases that add another layer of intrigue (sounding reminiscent of THIS OR THE APOCALYPSE’s “Hate The Ones You Love”), whilst the chipper acoustic jig of “Love Pretender” indulges in some additional female vocals to great effect. It’s these latter additions that add some much-needed sheen to the album – up until then, it’s very much a case of “heard it all before”.

Yes, it’s dependable stuff, but it lacks a certain “wow” factor (for want of a better phrase). Rest assured, DEAF AUTUMN won’t win awards for originality on “The Shape”. The raucous nature and riffage is prevalent in the underground scene and in mainstream, so there’s not a vast amount that’s new or different to make the ears prick up. Additionally, the production of the album feels somewhat flat – impact riffs seem to have been shorn of their attack, and the vocals (both screamed and sung) feel somewhat strained and restricted. What restricts matters further is the band’s tried-and-trusted writing formula – a safe medley of the usual verse-chorus-verse refrains. You’ll recognise the formula from countless other artists down the years, and whilst that’s not inherently a bad thing, it does leave a little to be desired. If you’ve listened to the likes of Rise Against, et al., you’ll feel right at home with DEAF AUTUMN.

Yet you cannot fault the band’s endeavour. The fact they are two albums in and signed to a label tells you all you need to know – these chums have ambition, as well as a good time. It may feel a little staid in places, and certainly typical of a post-hardcore band, but “The Shape” most definitely purveys a sense of fun. Not in a comical sense or evident bounce to the music, but in the sense that the band themselves have had fun. Clearly performing these songs and committing them to proverbial tape was a vastly enjoyable experience, and it shows on the album. “The Shape” might not set the world on fire, but it’ll bring a smile to your face knowing the band have produced steady sophomore and had a blast doing so.

Review by: Lee Carter
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