Florida’s metal outfit Black Tide has a pretty solid sophomore release with Post Mortem. While many bands in the genre tend to have a harsh feel, Black Tide definitely brings it back to a more melodic tone with this album. It’s a very clean set of songs that shows the band’s many strengths.

It’s quite impressive that front-man Gabriel Garcia can tread the tight rope of singing and playing lead guitar, a feat only greats can achieve.

Often, with metal groups the lyrics get lost in the screaming, and it’s difficult to connect with the emotion conveyed. This is not the case with Black Tide. On this album, the guitar riffs do not override the vocals, so you get the emotion behind the words, which is further enhanced by the music.

What stood out to me about the lyrics is that many musicians write from the standpoint of a scorned lover, while Black Tide brings a different point of view: the view of the lover who did the scorning.

On “Ashes” and “That Fire,” the lyrics show a real honesty about accepting one’s self for what they have done. It’s this honesty that makes Black Tide stand out among other metal bands. There is almost a narrative arc to the album, which opens with a sense of, “Yes, I’ve done all these bad things to you. It has to end,” and concludes on a different note.

Other themes in these songs include standing up for one’s self, evident in “Let It Out,” and the importance of helping out those in need, which is the idea behind “Lost in the Sound."

Overall, Post Mortem is a very well rounded composition of tracks that has a great mix of themes in a genre often rife with repetitive singles. We will definitely be seeing more of Black Tide if they continue to produce unique, solid work. I can’t wait for the next album.

Grade: A