A well-named antshrike of subtropical forest understory in the Andes. Male is uniform dark gray with no distinguishing features; female almost equally nondescript, plain brown overall with contrasting gray face. Stout bill with hooked tip, like other antshrikes. Usually seen singly or in pairs in the lower levels of montane forest, rarely coming into the open. Sometimes follows mixed-species flocks. Found at higher elevations than most other antshrikes. Listen for short series of “awh” notes, accelerating slightly.