After Smoke Clears Single: Machine Dependent Release: 31st July 2020
Groove metal outfit After Smoke Clears based in London continue their rising trajectory with their fourth single release of 2020. Certainly the best one so far, in my opinion.
The single’s music video has an interesting art style packed with imagery related to the themes of the song. Machine Dependent, as the title suggests, is an assault on society’s addiction to screens, materialistic possessions, or financial wealth. The song makes a concerted effort towards mental health awareness, but does not budge an inch of brutality.
The track sets a dystopian scene with dissonant notes and chords ebbing and flowing with the intensity. The band’s affinity for groove beats shine through with catchy rhythms that are a treat to move to.
The vocals seamlessly build on the groove with thoughtful consideration to timing, and skillful execution. Chanty one word hooks prelude an awesome “chorus” that by the end of the song will have most chanting with.
Groove metal is often labeled as monotonous, and it might be argued that is the point, but monotony is certainly not the case here. Tons of interesting twists and turns keeps the listener vested, without compromising the foundational groove of the song that in itself had me headbanging already within the first couple of seconds.
These guys have been improving and impressing all year, and the year isn’t over yet. I for one can’t wait to see what they hold in store for us after this release. After Smoke Clears are definitely the one to watch.
– Franco Rootman (The Basic Human Principle)