Pillars Of Autumn - Sodomizer II

As a genre, the deathcore sphere has moments of absolute, crushing brutality and a top-notch production that may lead a band to second stage festival bills at most. Often the genre restricts itself into such a nanoscopic product of basic chugging riffs, slow breakdowns and two different styles of primary screamed vocals. However, the last few years has seen the MySpace era of core evolve into an elevating success - often succeeding their originators and architects of what was once the joke of the metal world are now proudly boasting more diversity and succession than other metal sub-genres in the entire game. With the titans of the bracket leading the way and creating a divergent path for those that follow to simply create their own unique setting within the realm of core.

The further you dig down the genre's huge catalog, the more you'll find bands that have paved the path for this certain style of band in the way of technicality meets symphonic. Ten years ago this phase of the genre wouldn't of received a buzz of any sort, but with the help of bands like Cattle Decapitation and the recent huge success of Lorna Shore, it's not a surprise deathcore upcoming big guns like Signs Of The Swarm, Mental Cruelty and fellow Halo name-themed band Shadow Of Intent, are almost entirely leading the core fellowship back into a relevant cosmos within the underground music scene.

2021 may almost be up but not before these Canadian tyrants known as Pillars Of Autumn leave their most creative smudge in the underground with their latest album release, "Sodomizer II". As if the album's artwork isn't intriguing enough, the record itself is a monstrous, boulder-smashing rush that fuses multiple ingredients of that to entice hype around something that isn't specifically original, but definitely a fresh sound from the last couple of years.

Ears are pricked when the imperial styled entry of 'The Emergence' builds into a symphonic whirlwind of blackened core meets tech death. Vocalist Nick Young demands attention with his impression of Randy Blythe - eating-gravel-sounding vocals, which become a true highlight but never dominate over the band's true prospect of orchestral brilliance. 'The Hunt' was chosen as the band's first single released, and probably due to its range and tempo within the musicianship, focusing on elite drumming patterns, menacing guitar work and scope of the vocals within.

But the stand-out track could possibly be swiped by 'The Realist' - which introduces more of the piano used in earlier tracks, combined with blackened styled vocals one moment which burst into hardcore-shouts the next; a variety that grasps at your attention with a monolithic passion.

"Sodomizer II" is a powerful late entry to a great year of metal records, and will remain a hidden gem in the music scene for many years to come. If Pillars Of Autumn are to continue on this exciting and modern road, then there will be no doubts that triumph will follow through after such a promising record from a genre that's supposedly not only archaic, but also rudimentary. Pillars Of Autumn are living proof there's still new blood flowing from this old deathcore corpse, with hopefully plenty more life left to show.

4.5 / 5 STARS

1. The Emergence
2. The Hunt
3. The Witness
4. The Pessimist
5. The Separatist
6. The Optimist
7. The Realist (feat. Bobbi Vanet)
8. The Confession
9. The Redeemer

Self released
Reviewer: Max James
Nov 4, 2021

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