As Cities Burn

Scream Through The Walls

Written by: PP on 07/03/2020 06:23:38

As Cities Burn was a seminal emo / post-hardcore band during the mid-2000s before they went on hiatus in 2009. Their brooding soundscape was equal parts dark and metallic as it was melancholic and intricate, inspired by the complex soundscapes of bands like Brand New, The Used, Crime In Stereo, and Planes Mistaken For Stars in the process. Yet it always felt like they were never given enough credit, or at least, that credit was forgotten as years passed by during their absence. Another explanation is of course that they were simply ahead of their time stylistically speaking because the genre had not yet matured to the level of emotions bare as displayed by this band on their three albums.

They reunited recently, and behind most reunions is a desire to write more music together: "Scream Through The Walls" is their 4th album and first in a decade. It brings us back to the foundations of modern post-hardcore, back when the genre dabbled knee-deep in metallic hardcore-infused, scream-laden soundscapes while incorporating an unadulterated, overwhelming emotional charge into its expression. We're talking an indie-flavored vibe of nostalgia throughout, where raw emotion drips through the screeching guitars and the occasional scratchy clean delivery. Together, this creates an introspective soundscape that feels deep and complex, as the band pours out their emotions on their sleeves through clean/scream and quiet/loud dynamics.

"Hollowed Out", for instance, is drenched in melancholy and emotional cleans, contrasted by throat-piercing screams and slow tempo. Here, thoughts are pulled towards the debut album by The Used and material by Planes Mistaken For Stars in particular. "Maybe" likewise features as another album highlight, gradually rolling forward with raw emotion that's captured in such passionate, convincing fashion on record. Here, the melodic, introspective soundscape recalls Brand New, rammed with nostalgia and a level of detail seldom found in emo / post-hardcore.

In that sense, "Scream Through The Walls" is a fitting title describing the pervasive atmosphere of desperation on the record rather well. It's a scream-ey album designed for the sort of dark, hopeless moments that define emo and specifically post-hardcore as a genre, where you just want to scream your lungs out. But more importantly, it's an album with real depth and rich complexity that feels almost avant-garde in its experimental, thoughtful approach to the genre. It serves to remind us that As Cities Burn are still among the royalty within their genres.


Download: Hollowed Out, Maybe, Live Convinced
For the fans of: Have Mercy, Planes Mistaken For Stars, Brand New, (old) The Used, Crime In Stereo
Listen: Facebook

Release date 07.06.2019
Equal Vision Records

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