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Camera (3-song sampler)
Artist: Autumn War 
Label: Independent release
Length: 3 tracks, 16:09

Autumn War is a rock foursome from Chicago area that is currently preparing for their first full-length CD release.  Their current release is the CD single "Camera" featuring two other songs: "Goodbye, California" and "Dark Gods."

Interestingly enough, "Camera" is probably the least interesting song on the disc.  Lyrically, it discusses the global tragedies that we see on the news each night, but deem so unimportant due to their distance.  Musically, however, it sounds like most of the rock that is on radio these days.

"Goodbye, California" is more laid back and somewhat reminiscent of early Violet Burning, while "Dark Gods" speaks of the darkness in our lives and is also a bit more laid back and dreamy.

It will be interesting to see how their upcoming full-length sounds, but there is definitely some promise here.

Ken Mueller 9/6/2001

This four piece modern rock outfit, based in Chicago brings their edgy groove-rock to the table with this three track EP.   Citing influences ranging from Soundgarden to Kings X to Lenny Kravitz, Autumn War comes complete with heavy vocals, huge riffs and a killer base core.  Though their albums to date have only been EP and single releases, work is now in progress for a full-length album – which will be a welcome addition to their previous releases and hopefully capture the energy and catchy vibe already presented in a bite-sized portion on Camera. 

The title track, a deep guitar driven song delving into the stark realities of the fighting in East Africa, centers around a poignant photograph of a war victim.  “Caught by a camera in East Africa/Aired ‘tween a murder and a rape/They boost the ratings with her tearful eyes/Screen keeps her a million miles away/I never knew, I never saw/I never tasted pain quite like hers/Never did before.” ‘Goodbye California,’ is a song, naturally, about leaving California.  “Goodbye California/Sad to see you go/Maybe I’ll be coming back home soon/So long to your sunsets, your ocean-kissing shore/I wish that I could come back there for more.”  The final track, ‘Dark Gods,’ is an edgy, artsy song about the gods people cling to and the desperation of those trapped in that life.

Camera is a well produced snap-shot of what promises to be an excellent record.

Kerry Maffeo  (September 6, 2001)

Autumn War enter the world of music with some modernized '80s classic rock. Solid rock and roll musicianship, only slightly dated, that flirts with funk and hard rock.  Strong, clear, and soaring mid-range vocals ready for the arena.  There's even a guitar solo in the harder title track.  The latter two songs are more mellow and atmospheric, and all three songs reach 4-5 minutes.  The moody, whispered "Goodbye California" is my pick for the best track, although "Dark Gods" is pretty compelling as well.  The mix is clear and resonant, but the guitars become too weak and distant when the distortion kicks in, robbing the choruses of needed power.  They need a meatier tone when they wanna rock.

This is a promising demo for a band that could obviously do much more with a bigger studio budget and a producer.  Whether anybody's going to cut a break for a straight rock band in today's market...that's for the suits to decide.

Josh Spencer        10/3/2001

 

   
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