Review: “Origami” by From Once We Came

Formed back in 2015, London Metallers From Once We Came have taken an interesting route to where they are today. Rather than record and then take the songs they created to the stage, vocalist Thomas Smith, guitarist David Silver, bassist Brian Granahan and drummer Adam Gosling started playing shows across the UK in Spring 2016. Joining pretty much anyone who would have them, including Borders, Karybdis and Our Hollow Our Home, they eventually dropped single “No Call Back” in 2017, recorded with James Burton at Hoffen Productions. Fast forward to May 2020 and finally, they have completed their debut album “Origami” with Burton back at the helm. They’ve build their reputation on a ferocious live show, so the question is, has Burton managed to capture that live magic on the record?

The answer to that question is immediately obvious from the first few seconds of opening cut “Cowardice“, it’s programmed tension building introduction blown out of the water by Silvers ripping Metalcore staccato riffs as Smith bellows “Where are you now?”. The melodic leads are permiated by Orchestration and fist pumping, gang chanting attitude and that live adrenaline has been bottled. If “Cowardice” set the tone then “Progression” builds on its solid foundations with tight rhythmic gymnastics and bright Orchestral nuances that light things up. There is also space for a few achingly beautiful piano parts, momentary pauses in the bludgeoning rhythms and ripping guitar work that are a respite that mean that each salvo hits that much harder. “No Call Back” has always a solidly brutal affair with its roots in Death Metal and set in the context of the album, it’s rightfully a jewel in the crown. A call to arms, a call to the pit, it’s a headbanging winner from start to finish. It’s guitar tone sets it apart and it’s one that has opened them many doors.

A delicately clean sung first verse is torn limb from limb by Smith’s unclean bark as the melancholic and mournful “Origami Figurines” gets under way with narrative of an inner struggle caused by ones own actions. It’s a thing of thoughtful beauty with piano and programming balancing out the caustic guitar work perfectly. Going straight for the jugular with rapid fire metronomic kit work and tight Groove Metal riffs “Behind Closed Curtains” takes things down the From Eden To Exile route in some style. A mid track drop to build back up to a breakdown section is well constructed and Smith is at his savage best. Bringing back the programming touches to augment the Metalcore “Fight Or Flight” is another powerhouse cut. There are hints at early 2000’s Metalcore influences from the likes of Unearth but this is a new beast, with little snippets of lead that appear more prominently over multiple listens.

The final third of the record starts with “Lost In Thought“, which has an almost oriental vibe to the programmed introduction before the juggernaut begins to gain speed. The lyrical theme of the albums title track is built on with that broken hearted look back at the past, soaked in regrets. It could have been a ballad of sorts but instead the pounding rhythms and tempo shifts keep it strictly Mosh worthy, while still offering up that sing-a-long ability. There is a Post-Hardcore soft center here but it’s cleverly disguised with the craft put into the song writing. Changing gears “Band Of Brothers” asks where a man would be without his friends standing by his side. Brutal slabs of staccato riffs punch as hard as Smith’s blood gargling vocals while a soaring lead part is the icing on the cake, offering up a more technical note. It’s always slightly strange having a song that shares the name of the band, but “From Once We Came” does the title justice with Smith almost rap screaming through the first pair of verses with power and the gang chant of the bands name is a master stroke that will go down well live. Ending the album on a positive note with some Hardcore ethos in the lyrical theme is brilliant and slamming the naysayers with an evil laugh cracks a smile. They might have taken their time to get this debut album out in the World but it’s been worth the wait [8.5/10]

Track listing

  1. Cowardice
  2. Progression
  3. No Call Back
  4. Origami Figurines
  5. Behind Closed Curtains
  6. Fight Or Flight
  7. Lost In Thought
  8. Band Of Brothers
  9. From Once We Came

Origami” by From Once We Came is out now

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