“Take care now, bye bye then.”
Do you remember the scene from Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (1994) in which Ace stumbles into a small venue during a heavy metal show? Shirtless people stage dive, the front man screeches endlessly and the crowd mindlessly headbangs while the guitar players shred and headbang in unison in a dark, musty and windowless room. Take a second to recollect this moment. Just imagine it. 20 years later, As Empires Fall by All For One bears uncanny similarity to that very scene.
Ace Ventura, starring Jim Carrey, Courtney Cox, and Dan Marino, gave commercial America the metal they perceived to be true. A white collar middle aged man watching the film may not have ever been to a grungy rock concert, but he certainly had an idea in his head of what one would look and sound like. Hence, the quintessential heavy metal show in the movie, so white collar middle aged man watching knew exactly what kind of place Ace had walked into. Now, this does not necessarily mean that As Empires Fall has no originality, skill or positive attributes. The album has admirable melodic guitar solos and solid clean vocals that display All For One’s talent, and those aspects speak very well for the band. The areas of the songs containing clean vocals have a sound more reminiscent of bands like For Today. The short EP definitely shows that All For One has potential.
The EP unfortunately falls short in many areas. The screaming becomes monotonous and indiscernible, and the drums a bit lost and generic. The overall mixing of the album seems a bit amateur, but seeing as As Empires Fall is an EP, that flaw can be looked over as a hardship being of a new band. Hopefully, in the future, All For One can hone in on their style and separate themselves from Metal’s clichés.