After the Fall - Fort Orange (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

After the Fall

Fort Orange (2009)

Raise Your First

Albany, NY's After the Fall show a considerable improvement on their new full-length, Fort Orange.

Fort Orange is full of able and competent, fast melodic skatepunk that knows how to be serious as well as pay cheeky homage to its influences. While the opening title track is a scathing indictment of the Albany PD for killing an innocent man one New Year's Eve ("Were you following standard procedure?"), the next song, "Thomas Philbrick" asks coyly "Do you remember that Millencolin record? (YES! I! DO!)."

There's a healthy technicality at play here that makes the songs interesting but not over the top; Propagandhi certainly plays a big influence. The band went a little overboard on their last album, 2006's Everything, which had a lot of choppy, non-sensical instrumental tracks and songs that otherwise went nowhere. Although much of Fort Orange seems similarly speedy and curt, full of one-verse punches, it's more of a concise, focused batch of tracks than anything. There's also a good bit of a melodic hardcore flair here, as exposed in later cuts like the aggressive "It's Her Choice" and the great changeups of the minute-long "Bummer."

After the Fall's been working at their craft for a while and have definitely come up with something solid and worthwhile on Fort Orange. I'd love to see them further flesh this stuff out, and I bet they really hit their stride later on.

Fort Orange