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Autumns Eyes - "Please Deceive Me" (CD)

Autumns Eyes - "Please Deceive Me" CD cover image

"Please Deceive Me" track listing:

1. Ichabod
2. Blood In the Woods
3. Anxiety Spiders
4. Please Deceive Me
5. So Close to Shadow
6. Pangea
7. Cobwebs and Crosses
8. Red Wine and Resin
9. Haunting Your Daughter
10. The Wooded Road

Reviewed by on March 24, 2012

"The long wait is finally over, so fans can get ready to inject a new dose of Danny Elfman-meets-symphonic metal directly into their ear drums and continue to be blown away by the ever evolving sound that is Autumn Eyes."

“Please Deceive Me” is an album that’s been a long time in the making, originally to have been released several Halloweens running now but pushed back due to a variety of issues, including Autumns Eyes mastermind Dan Mitchell undergoing hand surgery. The long wait is finally over, so fans can get ready to inject a new dose of Danny Elfman-meets-symphonic metal directly into their ear drums and continue to be blown away by the ever evolving sound that is Autumns Eyes.

The one man act’s latest full-length album covers a whole lot of ground, both stylistically and lyrically. While “Haunting Your Daughter” brings to mind A Nightmare On Elm Street, “Ichabod” instead is a promise of love and support sung to an unborn child. It becomes apparent as the album progresses that the influences Mitchell is drawing from have definitely changed from previous releases, focusing on earlier eras of music and horror, such as the very ‘80s sounding, movie-style keyboards on “Anxiety Spiders.”

Although it’s highly melodic and has a load of synth sounds, “Please Deceive Me” isn’t as ambient or proggy as the “Abandoned Expression” album, nor or as black metal focused as “Surrender the Fire,” instead essentially splitting the difference and finding a balanced medium. Extreme metal fans aren’t necessarily going to be disappointed though, as the heaviness is always lurking around somewhere, such as soft piano at the end of “Anxiety Spiders” abruptly slamming into the heavy guitars at the beginning of the title track.

Autumns Eyes keeps up its trademark style of throwing in unexpected sounds and mixing up the musical ideas on each of the tracks. There is a good deal of voiceovers/movie samples to be found, but they are weaved into the music instead of used solely as intros or outros. There’s also an interesting traditional metal vibe frequently found in the guitar playing, instead of the black metal focus that was prevalent before.

The band’s motto has been “a new season in music,” and that idea fits perfectly here. “Please Deceive Me” is recognizably Autumns Eyes, but is also filled to the brim with unique sounds that see the band going in new and unexplored directions. Fans of goth, traditional metal, and black metal will find plenty to get into, and the horror themes are prevalent but not overly aggressive. To put it simply in movie terms, if “Trick ‘R Treat” is your preferred Halloween flick, then make a beeline for “Please Deceive Me.”

Highs: Wide range of sounds drawing on '80s influences but translating them into a modern sound.

Lows: There are parts that could definitely be heavier.

Bottom line: Autumns Eyes continues to succesfully translate a horror movie vibe into symphonic metal that covers a huge amount of stylistic and lyrical ground.

Rated 4.0 out of 5 skulls
4.0 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)