At The Soundawn – Shifting

By Ola Mazzuca

Ambience, atmosphere and articulation compose the triple-A sound quality of Italian hardcore experimentalists At The Soundawn.

Shifting is the third studio release from the Modena-based band, expressing the right amount of unconventional elements, yet not too obscure, bringing out the best of experimental and hardcore notes.

The music plays an emotional game of catch, as one minute of a song differs from the next. “Mudra: In Acceptance and Regret” features distorted vocals to slightly accented, soft-spoken verses of passion with an intricate, soulful saxophone appearance. The mood of tracks to follow, such as “7th Moon”, are full of angst and aggression before the airy introduction to “Caofedian” evokes a tranquil tone, where Luca DeStefano expresses smooth lyrics before plunging into screams amidst the solo-to-riff showcase between guitarists Andrea Violante and Mario Bassoli.

Creative ideas ooze from each song, audibly communicating the thought and work process of the record, proving the maturity of the music by expressing something different that is applicable to any disposition.

Meravigliosamente malinconico (beautifully melancholic) is the best way to describe At The Soundawn as Shifting is an intensely refreshing listen, leaving you with moments of nostalgia to acrylic imagery of future endeavours.

(Lifeforce America)

Rating: 9.0

Sean Palmerston

Sean is the founder/publisher of Hellbound.ca; he has also written about metal for Exclaim!, Metal Maniacs, Roadburn, Unrestrained! and Vice.