Bullet for My Valentine
The Poison


3.5
great

Review

by Zipzop5565 USER (20 Reviews)
December 28th, 2009 | 46 replies | 5,174 views


Release Date: 2005 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A decent album, this band gets a lot of hate, but they could have done much worse.

2 of 2 thought this review was well written

Bullet for my Valentine frequently gets *** on by the metal community to the point that people argue whether or not these guys actually play metal. It’s understandable, seeing as the band first started out as “Jeff Killed John” playing Nirvana covers, as well as Nu metal music from the likes of Korn and Limp Bizkit. However, as Bullet for my Valentine, the band has managed to create some pretty good (if not extremely flawed) original music.

The first major flaw of this band comes in the form of the lyrics, and I believe this is where most people tend to think this band is not metal. The lyrics deal with the same bland bull*** rubbish prevalent in all metalcore bands these days, but this is one of only a few downsides to listening to this band. “The Poison” starts with a clichéd quiet intro, but the band managed to get Apocalyptica to play the violins on the song, as well as adding a sweet guitar lick of their own, and I have to say it’s pretty well done. The album segues from calm, eerie music into fast and heavy with “Her Voice Resides.” It’s apparent the band put most of their focus on the guitars, assaulting us with fast and catchy riffs. The drumming is competent and well done, too.

After the first few songs, it’s apparent these guys have set their focus on guitar riffs from the likes of Iron Maiden and Metallica, than breakdowns. There are a few breakdowns throughout this album, but they are short and bearable. The guitar work for this album is pretty technical, for metalcore standards, offering a range of riffs heavy or melodic. There’s a lot of tapping and pinch harmonics on this album, so if you’re a fan of those, you’re in luck.

I’m not sure about live, but Matt Tuck handles both the screaming and clean vocals on this album, and his harsh vocals are aggressive, yet comprehensible. There’s no low, guttural death growls here, nor any high pitched shrieks, and I’m thankful for that. From other reviews I’ve read, most people complain that his clean vocals are too whiny, but I don’t have a problem with them. I’ve definitely heard worse clean vocals, like from The Devil Wears Prada or Attack Attack! An interesting note, there seems to be a complete balance between screamed and clean vocals. Neither clean nor harsh vocals dominate any of the songs.

This band reminds me of Trivium, another “more metal that core” band that focuses more on guitar work than breakdowns and scenes, and also like Trivium, this band is mostly shunned by metal heads, and it’s too bad because this album is definitely worth a listen. “Tears Don’t Fall” is a slow, somber song, but speeds up toward the middle, while “All These Things I Hate” starts off with an acoustic intro, segueing into heavy guitars and more screaming. The acoustic parts are pretty good, but it’s an overall average song. “Room 409” is okay too, nothing spectacular, but nothing terrible, either.

My copy of this album has “Hand of Blood”, and this song is one of the highlights of the album. Harmonized guitar riffs, fast-paced drumming, screamed and clean vocals, inaudible bass, what’s not to like about this song? After “Hand of Blood” we get “The Poison” which is another okay song, nothing spectacular. “Ten Years Today” at first seems lame, with the introspective and personal lyrics, but it has some cool guitar tapping, as well as more harmonized riffs toward the end of the song. “Cries in Vain” has some more good guitar riffs. However, the last song, appropriately named “The End”, is probably the worst song on the album. A slower song, it doesn’t offer much in the way of entertainment, and at over six minutes, the song just drags.

Overall, the album is pretty well done. Some, if not most, people think this is another bland metalcore borefest, but it really isn’t. Sure their formula for songs is simple: scream vocal / clean vocal, solo, outro, but it works. Bullet for my Valentine haven’t done anything new with this endeavor, but in this day and age, it’s hard to musically create something that’s genuinely innovative. Plus, for a metalcore band, this album is definitely listenable. The lyrics suck ass, yes, but if you can get past them, you’ll find a worthwhile album.



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user ratings (2119)
Chart.
3.4
great
other reviews of this album
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Comments:Add a Comment 
Zipzop5565
December 28th 2009



402 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Kind of short, and I think it reads more like a 4, but whatever. I thought this album was pretty good.

Phrike
December 28th 2009



1691 Comments


Good review, I basically agree with you on all fronts

Sure, it has stupid lyrics, whiny vocals, but the riffs, albeit quite repetitive, are very catchy and they focus on good guitar work instead of breakdowns. This album is quite premature though, they got better on Scream Aim Fire and I'm pretty curious about their new album.

Let the hate begin

Metalstyles
Staff Reviewer
December 28th 2009



8327 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

good and pretty fair review. I liked this album a lot when I was younger but it has grown off since. I think I prefer their follow-up slightly to this, although they're both near the same quality to me. Sometimes I think about upping them both to a 3, but I'm never certain and usually I am not in the mood to re-listen to these records either. Oh yea, a pos from me :-)

Ponton
Emeritus
December 28th 2009



5790 Comments


I think these guys have a new album next year. They said it's gonna be more catchy - I think.

Phrike
December 28th 2009



1691 Comments


Yeah, something in that sense. They said it's gonna have a higher lasting value. We'll see

Zipzop5565
December 28th 2009



402 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I haven't heard Scream Aim Fire

Metalstyles
Staff Reviewer
December 28th 2009



8327 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

damn, I was wishing for a rawer approach. Gonna check the new album out when it drops, but I shall approach it with low expectations if it's going to be even more catchy. Imo if they go even catchier it might kill their sound, and so, they would qualify for the great pop metal tag. I mean, if the new album will sound even more like that super tedious "Hearts Burst Into Fire" single off Scream Aim Fire, then I will definitely not be pleased.

Phrike
December 28th 2009



1691 Comments


Where did they say it's gonna be more catchy? I've read a few interviews and they didn't mention anything of that sort

Zipzop5565
December 28th 2009



402 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

wikipedia.org


theacademy
Staff Reviewer
December 28th 2009



28422 Comments


holy crap i just popped this bad boy into my sony discman. these guys are seriously gonna replace converge for the sputnik metalheads SO CATCHY ZOMG

Digging: Kimbra - The Golden Echo

Emim
December 28th 2009



26614 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Meh.

theacademy
Staff Reviewer
December 28th 2009



28422 Comments


nice diggs emim

ninjuice
December 28th 2009



6760 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

I mean, if the new album will sound even more like that super tedious "Hearts Burst Into Fire" single off Scream Aim Fire, then I will definitely not be pleased.

That's the only decent song on Scream, Aim, Fire.

Ponton
Emeritus
December 28th 2009



5790 Comments


Actually, I was apparently reading an interview from 2007 by mistake... I checked blabbermouth and they had one that looked very similar to that one for 2009. Sorry about that.

The article says the album is going to be more "classic-sounding" and slower in comparison to their past albums. One song they described was "hard rock" apparently.

Phrike
December 28th 2009



1691 Comments


@Zipzop5565
I don't think so, unless the phrases "mature" and "catchy" are identical to you

@Observer
Well if they want to make songs in the vein of the terribe "All These Things I Hate" and such, they might as well go on a hiatus or something, their slower songs aren't worth shit

Emim
December 28th 2009



26614 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

nice diggs emim


Likewise.


I liked the title track from SAF, but nothing else really. Probably should listen to that again...

EDIT: Forgot Waking the Demon, add that to the title track list.

theacademy
Staff Reviewer
December 28th 2009



28422 Comments


'hearts burst into fire' was a single? i also agree with ninjuice about that being the only song i enjoy off saf

theacademy
Staff Reviewer
December 28th 2009



28422 Comments


urgh crappy concert video. what an insult.

Zipzop5565
December 28th 2009



402 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

@ teddypicker

what?

Metalstyles
Staff Reviewer
December 28th 2009



8327 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

That's the only decent song on Scream, Aim, Fire.
title track, Last To Know, Deliver Us From Evil, Waking The Demon and even the super cheesy, yet oddly enjoyable Forever And Always are better than Hearts Burst Into Fire. I just hate its chorus and the only redeeming factor for the song is the rather neat solo.



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