Between The Buried and Me gained respect in both Hardcore/Metalcore crowds and in the Metal scene with their self titled debut LP. The group are from
North Carolina and signed to Victory Records, home to many popular hardcore acts. Between The Buried and Me have an extremely unique sound with the melding of styles that they use. But not only do they meld these styles well, they have mastered every single style that they incorporate into their sound. This is a rare feat for a band at their age. Between The Buried and Me show a diversity in their music, similar to bands like Opeth and The Dillinger Escape Plan, although their overall sound isn't completely similar to either band.
Tommy Rogers - Vocals and Keyboards
Mark Castillo - Drums
Paul Waggoner - Guitar
Nick Fletcher - Guitar
Jason King - Bass
Between The Buried and Me's second album builds upon the sucess that the band had with their self titled debut. Mixing Metalcore, Death Metal, Grind and slow emotional parts, Between The Buried and Me have a sound like no other band's. It's quite hard to measure the amount of talent in this group. Due to all of the different styles being thrown around in this band's music, the band need to be all over the place with different vocal and instrumental styles. However, it isn't just different musical styles being thrown around, it's also different sounds and tempos.
From the start of the album, Between The Buried and Me belt out brutal Death Metal, switching between the heavy styles of grind, death and metalcore. All of this, however can change in an instant to lightly sung vocals with strummed acoustic guitar and synthesisers. The majority of the album, however is brutal enough to keep the most elitest metalhead happy. Two good examples of the changes in style are the album's fourth track (and arguably it's best), "Mordecai". The track starts with death metal and flows through different heavy parts until it goes to a sung part. Rogers sings the part in a "normal" vocal style and there is an emotional guitar solo. The track ends with some really cool sounding guitar arpeggios. Then you reach for the reapeat button, trying to figure out what just happened. A slightly similar track is "Ad A Dglgmut", a song about noise (see the band's website for more details). The track starts with brutal parts and continues for a few minutes. Then there is a cut and the song transitions to a similarly heavy sound, but very much different mood. A smooth emotional guitar solo plays over the top and Tommy's voice later comes in with a singing voice. The band also have an electronic synth song that hints at some possible Radiohead or similar artist influence with the track "Reaction".
Musically, this band are as brilliant as they come. Tommy's voice seems to be capable of anything he puts it through. From death metal growls to Refused style screams to softly sung emotional sounds, his voice alone handles all of it. The guitars, bass and drums are all over the place. The drumming is spectacular. Death metal drumming isn't exactly for beginners and while Mark Castillo doesn't show the amount of skill as, say Flo Mournier (drummer for Cryptopsy), he comes close and certainly makes up for it with diversity of styles. The guitars too are insane. One minute they'll be doing lighting-fast riffing where it's hard to pick every note because it's so fast. The next minute they'll change to high to low sweeps up and down the neck. Then the tempo will change and they'll bust out chunky riff with large amounts of natural and pinched harmonics. Then the song will go clean and they will play lovely clean lead licks. The bass work too is wonderful, making full use of a 5-string bass and not just doubling the guitar lines. The best part about all of this is that from reports, the band are absolutely spot-on live.
There seems little to criticise about Between The Buried and Me's second effort. Some listeners may not "get" or understand the music. Some may just not like it. But this is a band who aren't focused on pleasing everyone with an accessible sound or a certain image. This is a band who are focused on writing the best possible music they can, and it's about bloody time. The only hesitation there is to give this album a perfect score is that after hearing the two albums that this band have released in chronological order, one can only wonder what Between The Buried and Me will do with their next album.
- Wonderful melding of styles
- The band master every style they touch
- Brilliant musicianship
- Special mention to the vocals that can handle just about anything
- Impatient listers may grow bored of such long songs
- Fans of only death metal may not enjoy the clean parts
- For people who don't enjoy the heavy aspect of the band, there may not be enough clean parts to make them enjoy the record.
- The band do their clean sound very well and it would be nice to see them take advantage of that a bit more.
(Shevanel, Take 2)
Ad A Dglgmut
For Fans Of:
Dillinger Escape Plan
Circle Takes The Square
FINAL RATING: 5/5