Between The Buried And Me
Tommy Rogers - Vocals
Mark Castillo/Will Goodyear - Drums
Paul Waggoner - Guitar
Nick Fletcher - Guitar
Jason King - Bass
1. Lost Perfection
2. b) Anablephobia
3. Camilla Rhodes
6. (Shevanel Part 2)
7. Ad a dglgmut
8. Destructo Spin
10. The Need For Repetition
Bio (from [url]www.lifeforcerecords.com[/url])
Between The Buried And Me was formed in late fall 2000 by Tommy Rogers (Undying, Prayer For Cleansing), Will Goodyear (The Voids, Prayer For Cleansing) and Paul Waggoner (Undying, Prayer For Cleansing). Writing the music came rather easily since each of the three had plenty of experience and lots of new ideas. Finding two other players with similar interests, however, proved to be much more of a challenge than anticipated. Nick Fletcher (Azazel) joined the group months later and quickly became a strong addition on guitar, but a bass player was nowhere to be found. After months of searching, Jason King (Azazel) joined the band on bass and the five piece was finally complete.
A little over a year ago, a good friend of mine (and future bandmate) recommended I take a listen to "Sugar Coated Sour" by The Dillinger Escape Plan. The first time I listened to it, I didn't get it. The entire song was all over the place, there was no single tempo to follow. I left it in my music folder for months and moved on. I came back and listened to it again several times, just to attempt to understand. It hit me after a few listens, how great this band was, what they were doing that had not been done before. I went back to my friend and ecstatically asked for more music, any other bands like DEP since I had already got their album. He suggested I listen to Between The Buried And Me's "Mordecai".
This time, it hit me square in the face. This band was amazing; they were not Dillinger, but they were something I had never even heard before that I had desperately needed to hear. I immediately bought the album.
Many of you probably looked at the genres I gave to this band for this album and simply feel that it cannot work. Most of the death metal enthusiasts will insist right off the bat that there can't be emo and death metal, and many emo fans vice versa. The only thing I can possibly do to persuade you is to tell you to listen to the album. BTBAM do all of those genres at different intervals in their songs, and best of all, it works
. It sounds nearly impossible in theory, but BTBAM pull it off admirably.
Two parts of "Lost Perfection" start the album off. They are essentially the same beast, and it is a hell of an entrance into the album. It immediately becomes apparent that this band is death metal, and they do it impressively well. Once you make it about a minute in, something happens: the riff is suddenly changed to a hardcore riff, with more lacing notes and palm-muted downstrokes as the vocalist changes his scream accordingly. Near the end of the first track, a simple rock break changes the formula even more. It's essentially a taste of what's to come, and the band goes back into the death metal for the rest of the second song, albeit a scizophrenic sort of death metal that never stays in the same place for long.
"Camilla Rhodes" continues this trend with speed-ups, slow-downs, and assorted brutal riffs. It's difficult to describe, but it works. At the end of "Camilla" a small fade-out breaks way into a short, clean guitar strum between two quick double bass hits as "Mordecai" slams into the speakers. If you did not buy my genre-titling, I advise you to listen to this song immediately. Actually, forget that, if you like any heavy music, listen to this song immediately, because it will change your outlook on everything. "Mordecai" travels from the heaviest death metal, to grindcore, to technical metalcore, all the way to emo, and gracefully segues into (what else) ambience with "Reaction". It's an unbelievable journey taken in two tracks, and has to be heard.
"Reaction" has some ambience and soft singing, and acoustic strumming introduces "(Shevanel Part 2)". If you didn't think emo was possible, this track readily proves you wrong. It's amazing, taking a listen to the other songs and then this one, and thinking of how the band progressed from death metal to emo so easily. Anyway, it is absolutely beautiful and necessary listening. After the last strum, a distorted guitar note weeds its way in and "Ad a dglgmut" breaks through. Back to the unyielding death metal again, and the best part is it's difficult to complain. Once he hits the lyric, "It all makes sense/ We're capable of beauty", everything drops out, and a much more epic riff show itself, with great scale progression and interesting, calm soloing. This moves into a softly sung section over clean guitars, and it begins to feel like this is "Mordecai"s brother, which is not something to complain about. The death metal wins over, and the song ends heavy.
Some synthy beeps bring in "Destructo Spin", which inducts more amazing power. Near the middle, BTBAM prove they are full of surprises with a short, soft sound, followed by pounding and screeching filtered vocals. "Destructo Spin" has an awesome artificial harmonic-filled break, a major-sounding outro, and it's a great changeup again. "Aesthetic" continues the album with an excellent intro riff and some amazing chug breaks, before hitting an outro that feeds into "The Need For Repetition", with an almost breakdown feel. "The Need For Repetition" continues the epic breakdown before some very cool riffs take over, and then a swimming cleaner section ends the album, overcast by noisy guitar. A bonus joke track is not worth noting, but exists nonetheless.
This album is simply amazing. The guitars can handle everything, from artificial harmonics to shredding to intense speedy tremolo picking. The vocals are all over the place, the drums are brutal and unpredictable, the bass is moody... everything is perfect. All the songs shift relentlessly, yet every part is notable and interesting. I am not quick to hand out fives on any album, but this record is most deserving. Buy it, listen to it, love it.
: All of them.