Between the Buried and Me



by StrizzMatik USER (16 Reviews)
September 14th, 2007 | 67 replies

Release Date: 2007 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Between The Buried And Me step up to the next level of prog-metal heavyweights with Colors, destroying any and all challengers with this nearly peerless masterpiece.

Between The Buried And Me (henceforth designated BTBAM) have made quite the mark in the world of metal. In a genre known more for its rehashed been-there-done-that formulas, hilarious D&D machismo B.S., and tendencies to jerk off copiously on their guitars, BTBAM is a daisy in a field of gnarly weeds, proving that unmatched virtuosity and melodic, innovative songwriting can coexist with crushing heaviness in a genre long devoid of originality.

Colors (and BTBAM in general) is an amalgam of virtually every breed of metal in existence - power metal, death metal, thrash, black metal, you name it - along with a healthy dose of progressive rock a'la Pink Floyd and King Crimson, some dramatic pop sensibilities (think Queen) and a penchant for experimentation and weirdness not unlike Mr. Bungle (or any typical Mike Patton record). Their schizophrenic nature of throwing everything (including the kitchen sink) imaginable into their music blender allows them to go from a crazy 200-bpm blast beat to a smooth jazz/polka part to a country hoe-down (!) into a poppy power metal verse, which is utterly ridiculous in the fact that it actually works - seamlessly, in fact - without sounding like they're smoking mad amounts of rocks or shamelessly masturbating to their incredible talent.

Basically a huge 64-minute song separated by tracks, Colors transitions its songs together without any real breaks, bombarding you with BTBAM's relentless aesthetic. This record never lets up for a second, the brief respite of "Viridian" being the only track that remains deceptively quiet the whole time. Otherwise, everything is all the way on 11. This album features some of the most insane "holy *** how did they do that"" instrumental moments committed to disc as of yet. Its kind of the understatement of the millennium to say these dudes shred their respective instruments better than 99% of their peers do. The kicker is that they do it tastefully and in an uplifting, catchy way that belies their incredible range of influences. I mean this band put out a cover album where bands like Blind Melon, Depeche Mode, and Counting Crows sat right next to Sepultura, Earth Crisis, and Pantera, giving you an inkling of their impressive devotion to all styles of music. It's this hodge-podge of tastes that give the listener the impression that these guys are having some serious fun playing this stuff. It's very refreshing for a genre like metal, where most of the bands take themselves and the ridiculous nature of their music far too seriously.

But despite their bizarre palette of influences, BTBAM is musically not a band to be screwed with. Tempos spin, switch, stop, and reverse on a dime (see the outro of "The Decade Of Statues") without a break, the guitars slit your throat and squeeze the blood from your body with no mercy, and the bass is astounding in that you can actually HEAR it on a metal album, let alone that it takes spotlight more than a few times without a problem. This time around, the vocals often take a welcome break from the tired death metal grunts into lilting, melodic falsettos and multi-part Floydian harmonies. Did I mention the drumming (insert breathless hyperbole of your choice)" If there's a contender for a modern-day King Crimson or Pink Floyd on PCP, BTBAM takes the cake and eats the baker too. There are some absolutely chilling, crushingly epic moments all over this record that will drop your jaw to the floor in awe at how incredibly easy these guys mix mind-blowing technical workouts with undeniably massive hooks. Just listen to the vintage Floyd chorus of "Sun Of Nothing", the hyperactive meltdown of the intro to "Ants In The Sky", the crushing final denouement of "White Walls", the soul-rending melodic scream in the crescendo of "Prequel To The Sequel", or the ultra-cool Phyrgian riffage in "Informal Gluttony" and try not to completely bow down like the lowly slave you are. It's actually pretty difficult to pick out all of the heart-stopping moments on the disc because Colors is literally throwing them at you every couple of minutes. You simply never know what's coming next.

Despite what would appear to be my ass-kissing of the highest "using Preparation H for chapstick" order, Colors isn't completely flawless; the throat-shredding vocals are definitely an acquired taste for some, it can be a beast to get through it in one sitting, and it relies quite a bit on the listener's ability to appreciate wankery (albeit tasteful wankery). Some parts and sections are more than a little reminiscent of their previous works, 2003's The Silent Circus and 2005's Alaska. You're going to get an aural bludgeoning of genres you'd never see in the same zip code, let alone in a single song. You also won't "get" it all in one sitting. And if you haven't figured it out yet, it's an Album that needs some real TLC to appreciate fully. But like any "grower", the reward is undeniably great. It's simultaneously BTBAM's hardest and easiest album to listen to, the former due to it's beastly run-time and lack of traditional song-structure, and the latter, its added melody, amazing cohesiveness, and consistency. There simply aren't any heavy bands out there that mix so many completely opposite styles together with such a mastery of arrangements, skills, melody, and catchy songwriting.

Put bluntly, Colors is completely un***withable, and I have no problem believing it will eventually be considered a modern classic of the highest order down the road. If you listen to one metal album this year, do yourself a favor and grab this the second you can, or you're missing out.

This album releases on September 18, 2007. It can be streamed from BTBAM's Myspace page here:"fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendID=513 7567

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user ratings (4560)
other reviews of this album
1 of
  • 204409 EMERITUS (4)
    Between the Buried and Me produce a surprisingly varied and successful fourth album that i...

    eggsvonsatan (5)
    What the fuck just happened here?...

    thesystemisdown (3.5)
    Anybody sampling bits and pieces of Colors will find it excellent, but taken as a whole it...

    2icguitardude (5)
    Between the Buried and Me reach a new level of skill and musicianship in their staggeringl...

  • kingjulian (4)
    It was fun while it lasted and we're still great friends....

    guitarplaya91 (5)
    Between The Buried And Me use all their influences and skill to create this monster of a a...

    BringMeABrick (5)
    Through its relentless riffs, dazzling melodies, and altogether beautiful combinations of ...

    bbdmittenz (5)
    I dare you to find an album with the amount of creativity, flow, and precision, that Betwe...

  • TheEnigmaPrognosis (5)
    It's music, that's what it is. Music at it's finest....

    TheMoonchild (4)
    The aptly named "Colors" is a colorful and refreshing breath of fresh air that isn't your ...

    Si1v3RfaNg (5)
    BTBAM take "Alaska" to the next level and experiment even more with the concept of genre m...

    skeletorissatan (4.5)
    Debated though they may be, it is an undisputable fact that Colors is a fantastic release ...

  • qwe3 (1.5)

    johnnydeking29 (1)
    The album that killed Pink Floyd...

    Altmer (2)
    Shitty, pretentious, and incoherent, this is a pathetic excuse for a metal record....

    peartnoy (2.5)
    Frustrating because of how good it could have been. A major disappointment....

  • ObjectivismIsALie (1.5)

    McDiggitz (5)
    A journey into the depths of music....

    feelthemetallica (1)
    Fuck you Between the Buried and Me....

    chris1 (4)
    This album kicks Progressive Metal ass! Yes its that simple!...

  • fellymusicman25 (4.5)
    Between the Buried and Me push their boundaries and release an album that will make an app...

    Slimjim367 (4.5)
    Colors is proof that Between The Buried and Me are going places....

Comments:Add a Comment 
September 15th 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

This album is so good I'm not gonna lie

September 15th 2007


Album Rating: 4.5

I'm a big fan of it. I never really liked BTBAM as much until I heard this. It's undeniably brilliant and more bands should put out albums this great.

Digging: Glassjaw - Material Control

September 15th 2007


This review is magnificent.

September 15th 2007


Album Rating: 4.5

It's funny that my two album picks of the year so far (Minus The Bear and BTBAM) have such a pronounced Pink Floyd influence. Old is new, ad infinitum.

September 15th 2007


Album Rating: 3.0

Review is a bit fanboyish, but it's still very well written.

Ants of the Sky is incredible.

September 15th 2007


Album Rating: 4.5

LOL I'm not even a huge fan of BTBAM or most metal in general, really. Words can't do this album justice though and I'm very picky about my music. Thanks for the comments!

September 15th 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

Informal Gluttony is the only song I can listen to.

September 15th 2007


Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

4 more days, all I have to say

September 15th 2007


200-bpm blast beat to a smooth jazz/polka part to a country hoe-down (!) into a poppy power metal verse, which is utterly ridiculous in the fact that it actually works - seamlessly, in fact - without sounding like they're smoking mad amounts of rocks or shamelessly masturbating to their incredible talent.

lol. I should realy take a listen then. excellent review.

September 15th 2007


Album Rating: 5.0

This album slays, as does this review.

The polka break in "Prequel to the Sequel" is so goddamn cool you don't even know.

September 15th 2007


excellent album, and i found the review quite fascinatingThis Message Edited On 09.15.07

September 15th 2007


Album Rating: 3.0

My personal favorite moment is the "bawoooom" Mr. Bungle-y section in Sun Of Nothing.

September 15th 2007


Album Rating: 4.5

I first knew that this album was epic when I heard what sounded like Sesame Street on crack right in the middle of Sun of Nothing. Since then, this has not left my CD player.

Awesome review, by the way. You're absolutely right, this is going to be a modern classic.

September 15th 2007


Superbly written review. It flows in a way seldom seen around here. I really, really enjoy the way you write.
Gouts of dog's blood to you, kind sir.This Message Edited On 09.15.07

September 15th 2007


Album Rating: 4.5

I think that's a bit of a stretch.

In precisely what way is that a stretch? They mix just about everything done in metal together into one cohesive sound, except nu metal, which no one can really call true "metal" anyways.

September 15th 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

change it to every good breed of metal in existence

September 15th 2007


Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off


i really do have to buy this album

do I

September 15th 2007


Album Rating: 4.5


Yes you do.

September 15th 2007


Album Rating: 3.5

yeah, even non-BTBAM fans can prepare to be amazed.

September 15th 2007


why do they ruin the first few minutes of ants with the rest of the song

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