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After Oblivion - Stamina Award winner

After Oblivion
by Salvador Aguinaga II at 24 November 2012, 11:03 PM

Perhaps you’ve heard of this band before. If you did you probably realized a resemblance between DEATH’s "The Sound of Perseverance" era and AFTER OBLIVION’s sound. How one reacted is hard to say you could love it, like it, not think much of it or think of them as a clone. If you chose the latter or an option similar then you need to get your ears checked. While Adnan Hatic and Chuck Schuldiner could be compared as similar vocalists, everything else takes its own path. Releasing an EP, "Vultures" in 2011, AFTER OBLIVION finally releases their debut full-length "Stamina".

I’m not going to lie, I also fell into the trap of seeing them as a mere DEATH tribute band. “Deliverance” and “For The Rebels” surveyed in my ears and I couldn’t help but gnarl my face and feel a little disgusted. On “Deliverance” there was a riff similar to DEATH’s. On “For The Rebels” I heard the word “scavenger” in a screeching voice similar to Chuck’s not only that but later on you’d get this awkward pause of silence, a technique DEATH also used in “The Sound of Perseverance”. With these descriptions in mind, how do you think I initially reacted? I was ready to throw in the towel and suffer hearing a band that uses leftover DEATH riffs who calls it their own work. When I got to “Vultures”, one of the three songs that also appeared on the EP, I started listening to AFTER OBILIVION for who they really were and not just a cheap imitation. I’m telling you up front if you concentrate too much on Adnan Hatic’s vocals you are missing out on some musicianship. Believe me when I say you want to hear every second of it as this is like a storm. It passes you really quick without you noticing if you don’t pay close enough attention.

I ran through this album once and came back to it again a few days later. Smart move on my part as it gave me a chance to digest of what to expect and concentrate even more on listening to their musicality a lot more closely. This time the first two tracks didn’t bother me at all even though I heard the mentioned above descriptions yet was a lot less critical of it. As I said you will miss a lot if you are fixated on Hatic’s vocals I can’t stress that enough. Under all of it is some neat songwriting, technical to the core. Not technical as by modern’s standards but as it was in the 90s. While “The Sound of Perseverance” focuses more on a progressive death metal sound, “Stamina” focuses on achieving a fluid technical thrash sound. The sound was really tight and recorded well to last bass line.

I don’t know if I’m obsessed with Egyptology at the moment but I heard the vibe of Egypt in some of the riffs and acoustics featured in the album. I would say there’s moments where the decisions among the musicians are strange, little snippets where it ought to be cut shorter but in the end I’m glad they are able to go outside of my expectations and explore a little in their own world. “Ascent of Misery”, their one and only instrumental is an excellent piece to feel the vivacity of the bass, a track you can sink into, close your eyes and relax. As “Hatred Profound” closes off the album, they couldn’t have picked a better song to finish it off. This is the song I’d like to call as DEATH’s "Evil Dead"‘s fraternal twin off the “Scream Bloody Gore” album. While “Evil Dead” has that neat vibe of resurrecting an army of savage zombies wreaking havoc amongst the earth, “Hatred Profound” is the polar opposite. Angelic as it can be, speaking to the skies. They are related but different in personality and style.

The album to sum it up is like a storm. Quick to pass but leaves its memories on a certain day. While it might ruin someone’s plans, it creates the potential for nature to grow. Sometimes it’s not the way we want it but deep down inside you are glad it happened.

4 Star Rating

1. Deliverance
2. For the Rebels
3. Vultures
4. Breeding Perdition
5. The Carnal Form
6. Septic Mind
7. Ascent of Misery
8. Stamina
9. Hatred Profound
Jasenko Dzipa - Guitars
Adnan Hatic - Guitars & Vocals
Haris Hasancevic - Bass
Marko Gacnik - Drums
Record Label: Metal On Metal Records


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