Asylence – Endanger Us All (Self-Released)Friday, 24th February 2023
Access to a wealth of material during downtime should pay dividends even for DIY artists like Detroit, Michigan’s Asylence. Since releasing their debut EP Eulogy of Man in 2020, they’ve released a series of singles leading up to this first full-length for Endanger Us All – which combines older live set staples with new songs, hopefully combining the best of both worlds. The quartet started with desires to be the heaviest act they could be – but it’s evident through these eight main tracks (beyond a blood curdling, passionate “A Call to Arms” 55 second intro) the group encapsulates wider influences across the melodic death metal / metalcore spectrum.
The underlying melodic aspects creep in at varying angles – be it specific, clean guitar measures, hypnotic chant-like or alternative background vocals, or this jackhammer propulsion when all the instrumentation comes together as one to sonically devastate in tribal, groove-oriented passages. The variance in pacing often song to song ensures less chance of listener wandering, guitarist Aaron Lumsden very effective in his versatile chops across the melodic death, metalcore, and extreme genres – peppering tremolo licks or attractive catchy movements against early 90’s Scandinavian circular runs to make “Eternity, Please” and “In This Hell” obvious standouts. The drumming of Alex Aubuchon is flexible, tight, energetic as well as thoughtful – garnering praise in the diverse steady main duties against some sophisticated fills/transitions, often mirroring the aggressive screams/growls of Ryan Lang in rhythmic savagery during the dynamic title cut. Where Asylence expand beyond normal parameters is in a song like “In Solidarity We Die” – the placement of lower register alternative / clean vocals against the heavier screams / growls allows the music to be equally twisted at a doom to mid-paced crawl, adding tension plus darker textures over the course of the arrangement.
Smartly keeping the run time for Endanger Us All just under 30 minutes, Asylence approach their music from a mix of influences that include acts like Amon Amarth, Arch Enemy, Devildriver, and Jungle Rot. They aren’t exactly breaking the mold in originality, yet the type of ideas assembled can reach comfortable payoffs for many underground (and above) patrons.