With songs nearly as exhaustive in title as in length and content, The Autumn Project's latest album of emotional and epic soundscapes will be a love-it-or-hate-it experience for many listeners. There is no gray area regarding A Burning Light, a five-song, 56-minute disc of crushingly dark and brutal all-instrumental sounds that linger on the fraying edges of progressive, metal and ambient music. "At the Feet of Sleeping Giants" is barely audible until almost the three-minute mark, eventually exploding into a slow-building cacophony of power chords, moody keys and thick layers. "Across Mountain Tops to Broken Bridges" echoes the ringing guitars textures of early U2, and "We Cast These Shadows" actually rocks a little, albeit at a dirge-like pace. There's nothing here that's vital to your music collection, but these compositions do have a foreboding sense of importance, sort of like the soundtrack to a creepy independent film that's more memorable for its scenes than its plot. The Autumn's Project's mesmerizing capabilities are bolstered in a live setting with original film projections created by the trio's founder, multi-instrumentalist Mike Gustafson.
1) At the Feet of Sleeping Giants
2) Across Mountain Tops to Broken Bridges
3) Between the Smoke and Mirrors
4) We Cast These Shadows
5) Burning Light