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Beneath the Encasing of Ashes
Artist: As I Lay Dying
Label: Pluto Records
Length: 12 tracks/30:02

The short review:  As I Lay Dying are at the bank trying to cash checks written by Zao and Converge.

The slightly longer review:  This is metalcore with death and black metal vocals.  Mid-tempo grooves like a mutha, dropkicking basslines to shake your system.  The chaos fades into soft, beautiful interludes periodically, and melodic guitar lines cruise over the top rhythms to help it all go down smoothly.  The sonics are good and jagged, though, for those who just want to be battered.  This is pretty standard stuff; only the last song shows much memorable range or dynamics, with some whispered laments and growling. Lyrics include lessons learned about the purification that pain brings, and worshipful cries to God.  It sounds like the guys have been through some heavy experiences.  As I Lay Dying should continue (this is their second album, I think) to scratch the itch of those who can't get enough of the savage grind.

Josh Spencer      10/1/2001


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