Mute Prophets is a St. Louis, Missouri-based band formed in 2009. Quietus Of Autumn is their third full-length album and is comfortably located in the Symphonic and Power Metal genre. This is a complex and expansive record with added elements of progressive metal and hard rock and some influences from black metal with the vocals.
- Louisa Rix – Bass
- Chris Tompkins – Guitars
- Kevin Goetz – Guitars, Keyboards, Vocals, Drum Programming
- Adrienne Odenthal – Vocals
Quietus Of Autumn was independently released in 2019. Consisting of 12 tracks, this is over an hour of atmospheric and heavy metal.
- Suicide Sequence
- Lost Horizons
- My Tribute
- Never Again
- Martyr’s Glory
- Into the Ice
- Quietus of Autumn
- Between Love and Fear
- Beneath the Waters
Mute Prophets is not a record that came to me through normal channels. There was an offer to get the CD for free, just pay shipping, on social media. I must admit, I usually do not pay much attention to things like that, and I can’t really tell you what caught my eye, but something did. And I’m glad that happened. After ordering the CD, I got a series of emails from the band. Typical things like “thanks for ordering” and “we appreciate your support” were in a couple of the emails, but then there was the more personal story of how I joined from Adrienne.
That was a bit of unexpected darkness. The story is horrifying at the start but ends up being a story of perseverance and hope. I won’t repeat the story here, but it is worth the time to read in full, so here is a link; https://muteprophetmusic.com/funnel/blog-post-1. As a member of a recovery program, I always appreciate hearing stories of overcoming pain and adversity. The tale also makes me appreciate the music more. When I relate to something on a level like this, it just feels more personal and connected.
Now on to the music. I love the intro on “Fragments.” With the horns added, the keys and drums are a nice touch. The shift into the song’s main body is a little abrupt, but I love the change in guitar phrasing. The song feels a bit discordant, but it works. The solo over the riff is pretty impeccable. “Suicide Sequence” is a ripper of a tune. That opening guitar salvo is primo! The vocals are high-pitched, soaring over the soundscape until they go guttural. They put a power into the voice that is new and somewhat refreshing. This is a band and a singer that can go to the best of extremes.
The next song that really struck me is “Never Again.” That opening riff with the airy keyboards is fantastic. The lead work early on is very well placed and timely. The blast beat drums that transition from the verse to pre-chorus to chorus shift not just the tempo but the tone of the song. I hear a bit of progressive metal here, showing yet another influence. As a prog lover, this gives me a warm, fuzzy feeling in my ears.
My favorite song on the disc is the title track, “Quietus Of Autumn.” The intro is peaceful and soothing, but we know this is not going to last. The tones hint at Asian influences, but then I hear a bit of old European classical. Suddenly, the riff kicks in and changes the sound without throwing the song off the initial passages. Brutality comes next and makes the song go really heavy. This section is marked by an interplay of clean and harsh vocals, something that is becoming more common in metal these days. There are shifts, drops, pauses, and changes. All of this mixes into an epic, 11-minute song that is brutal and beautiful.
The record wraps with “Empathy,” a six-plus-minute song that has more progressive goodness. Adding in some vocal layering to create a choir, the song is immense. Not quite “Quietus” big, but still larger than life. The shredding guitar solo in this one is very good and deserves a special mention as to how well done it is. The added strings and the bass beef up this song and make it a more complex composition worthy of standing beside giants in the power and progressive metal realms.
The band calls themselves symphonic metal, but that is a minimalist categorization. There is so much more to this band than just symphonic metal. Mute Prophet has a well-rounded sound that includes elements of multiple genres. They blend them with care and consideration. A few of their transitions are a little too abrupt or choppy for my taste, but the overall effect is good. I enjoyed listening to the record, which is what I really look for in an album. Did I come away with something that made me feel like I connected to the record?
The music is well written, the instruments well played. The vocals are good. Her cleans are good, and her growls are solid. The guitars are excellent, and the keys really add a lot of dimension to the overall sound. The bass and drums are killer, supporting the lead instruments proficiently. The layered orchestration not only adds to the amount of sound you hear but weaves into the tapestry of the feel of the music. Kudos to the composer(s) for nailing that bit.
- Guitars – 8
- Rhythms – 8
- Vocals – 8
- Songwriting – 9
- Production – 9
- Overall – 8.20