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Live At Looney Tunes

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Album Review

Though the core of From Autumn to Ashes' sound is raw aggression, the first thing that stands out on Live at Looney Tunes is not the band's intensity (of which there is plenty) but the album's startlingly clear recording quality. Some of this can be attributed to the location of the performance (a small space as opposed to an arena or outdoor amphitheater), but it's still a surprise to hear a live recording that sounds more like a studio outtake, or perhaps a studio demo. The album's resulting intimacy is enhanced by a bare-bones approach to both tracks and external presentation — there are no bonus tracks or special liner notes — allowing the band's exceptional performance to stand on its own. It's also nice to hear a concert album where the music and lyrics are so clear; when the crowd comes in at the end of "Pioneers," they're enthusiastic but not overly raucous or distracting, a refreshing departure from live recordings in which the audience creates more noise than the band. Naturally, From Autumn to Ashes make plenty of noise themselves throughout the performance, but what makes Live at Looney Tunes special is their own excitement to be performing at a place they love. Throughout the set, the band refuses to hold back either energy or volume despite the cozy nature of the venue. In contrast, vocalist Francis Mark offers some gentle asides that are relaxed but not overly chatty. At the beginning of "Royal Crown vs. Blue Duchess," he explains his connection to Looney Tunes, the independent record store where the album was recorded, without turning the moment into an advertisement. (The store's logo does appear on both the CD and the case.) A few other anecdotes appear throughout the career-spanning set, which concludes with a rousing rendition of "After Dinner Payback." The track brings together Mark's banter, the cheering of the assembled crowd, and a powerful, punchy performance from From Autumn to Ashes — tying together all of the elements that make Live at Looney Tunes an appealing album for fans.


Formed: 2000 in Long Island, NY

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s

Long Island, NY's From Autumn to Ashes gained a reputation for being one of the more melodic bands in East Coast hardcore. Their sound involved a variety of ingredients, from hardcore, metal, and thrash to alternative rock and screamo. Overall, FATA's work was quite melody-minded -- even lush at times -- but vocalist Benjamin Perri also had a screaming, totally unforgiving side. This dynamic was helped by the contributing vocals of drummer Francis Mark, who sang in a gentler, more conventional fashion....
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Live At Looney Tunes, From Autumn to Ashes
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