Album Review: Fit for an Autopsy’s Absolute Hope Absolute Hell is Absolutely Incredible

  • Phil Boozeman

When the news first broke of former Fit For An Autopsy frontman Nate Johnson leaving the band, I figured FFAA would go the way many bands do after a vocal change: to shit. But Christ al-fucking-mighty could I not have been more wrong.

FFAA’s previous release, Hellbound, is one of my favorite deathcore albums of all time, right up there with Whitechapel’s This Is Exile… and Absolute Hope Absolute Hell is BETTER than Hellbound.

What makes Absolute Hope Absolute Hell superior even to Hellbound? Well, there’s something noticeably different about FFAA this time around — and that’s how melodic and ambient this record is. Hellbound, although incredible, was all about being brutal and angry. On the other hand, Absolute Hope Absolute Hell is just as angry and brutal, but the melodies amplify the heavy parts and make them stand out. It’s the difference between a buff metalhead in high school who only wants to fight people, and a buff metalhead in college who only wants to fight people but can also play the violin, speak French and Italian, and cook a five-star, three-course meal. FFAA has grown immensely, and this album shows it better than a Las Vegas stripper.

As if the use of melody wasn’t enough, FFAA’s breakdowns still stand a cut above the rest. In a world of unoriginal deathcore where we have bullshit bands like Chelsea Grin and Bring Me the Horizon ruling the genre with brain-cell-killing, single-layered breakdowns, FFAA manages to breathe some fresh life into the principle element of a stale and dying subgenre.

The same can be said about the album’s lyrics, too. FFAA’s new vocalist, Joe Badolato, has some killer lines, like this one from Absolute‘s high point, “Ghosts in the River”:

My will is broken
My eyes have seen what they’ve always known
Every man has a shadow behind him
Every soul has a price in gold

I’ve spent far too many hours listening to this album in a futile attempt to try and find even one thing wrong with it. This is hands down the best album I have heard in a very, very long time. If deathcore is a sinking ship, then Fit for an Autopsy is the rescue plane, as well as the only good thing to ever come out of New Jersey. Pat yourselves on the back and have a beer, gentlemen, because you’ve damn well earned it. Absolute Hope Absolute Hell kills harder than Casey Anthony’s babysitting, and if you don’t pick this album up, you probably don’t even like metal in the first place.

Fit for an Autopsy’s Absolute Hope Absolute Hell drops October 2 via eOne Music. You can stream the track “Murder in the First” here and pre-order the album here(physical/deluxe editions), here (physical/super-duper-deluxe editions), or here (digital). The band will be on tour with The Acacia Strain starting in November. Get dates here.

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