Review Summary: Like a metal marriage of divorcees
Disbandment sucks. It sucks even more when the bands in question are powerhouses, leaving behind their discographies and their fans with a longing for more. First with The Dillinger Escape Plan in 2017, then Every Time I Die in 2022, watching these two split was heartbreaking as we lost two iconic bands in the metal scene. Reunions, on the other hand, are exciting. Seeing a band you once thought was gone forever return to their scene is a joyful experience; a hope and longing fulfilled. Although Better Lovers isn’t a reunion of a band per se, it is a reunion of forces; with the instrumental framework of Every Time I Die (and Will Putney), and vocals from Greg Puciato, God Made Me An Animal
brings these metal experts together for an intense 15-minute journey into pure chaos.
“Sacrificial Participant” wastes no time, jumping straight into a driving groove filled with intricate riffing and gritty vocals that set a blistering pace for the EP. Amidst the aggression and heaviness, the track explodes into a captivating clean chorus that accentuates not only Greg Puciato’s vocals but also the instrumental capabilities of melodic chord progressions and lofty guitar leads that showcase a different songwriting side of the band. “30 Under 13” and “Become So Small” push aside the melodies of the opener and opt for a relentless intensity. Shifting between speedily riffed sections and grooves that are simultaneously aggressive and catchy, the two highlight the raw heaviness of God Made Me An Animal
with dissonant progressions and chugged chromatic chords amplified by the gritty hardcore production. The eponymous closer dives head first into a southern metal tinge that goes from 0 to 60 in no time. Much like the opener, “God Made Me An Animal” brings in a hint of melody with a bridge filled with soaring clean vocals and harmonies of guitar leads, only to lead back into a conclusion of blistering riffs and intense rhythm. With the title track, Better Lovers continues to display their chaos yet shows their melodic sensibilities that highlight a rich side to their songwriting.
Although short in length, Better Lovers’ debut EP gives a taste of what fans have been missing. With Greg Puciato’s multi-faceted vocals and Every Time I Die’s raw instrumentation, God Made Me An Animal
captures the powerful aggression that has been missing in metal since the two disbanded. While it may not be a complete reunion, Better Lovers reunites some of the most talented musicians for another display of intensity. With the likelihood of either band reuniting being almost impossible, Better Lovers may be the next best thing. Whether this will match the former discographies is yet to be decided, but God Made Me An Animal
is a step in the right direction.