REVIEW: BURY TOMORROW – “Black Flame”
Dawn 'Mama Love' Brown
In explicably to some, and perfectly acceptable to others, Metalcore as a subgenre has been picked on, looked down at and summarily trashed by critics and metal fans alike. This sentiment is unfair at best considering most new contemporary metal bands can be labeled as Metalcore and are still burning up the charts and enjoying great success.
One such band is Bury Tomorrow, a five-piece self-proclaimed Metalcore band hailing from Southampton, England consisting of brothers Daniel Winter Bates on vocals and Davyd Winter Bates on bass, Adam Jackson on drums, Kristan Dawson on guitars and Jason Cameron on both vocals and guitars. Bury Tomorrow has had a consistent line-up having had only one change to its founding members when Kristan replaced Mehdi Vismara on guitars in 2013. This congruence is practically unheard of in most bands in music today regardless of genre.
Established in 2006, BT has long associated themselves with the Metalcore moniker, and proudly so. With four studio albums under their belt, three of which have been with Nuclear Blast, BT is set to release their forthcoming record, ‘Black Flame’, in July of 2018. It’s riff-heavy and masterfully produced offerings are accentuated by atmospheric breakdowns and a successful mix of rough and clean vocals that seem to be the norm for many contemporary metal bands. BT is inherently heavier than the current breed of Metalcore, being more in line with, for example, Parkway Drive or Thy Art is Murder. However, Bury Tomorrow stands apart with their melodic choruses and thundering drum and bass lines that often retreat into wonderfully interesting closing sequences that add an air of industrial influence. One such selection is the title track of the album, “Black Flame”, which has an almost Pink Floyd-esque closing sequence for about the last 15 seconds of the song. It’s aesthetically pleasing and seems to logically fit with the song.
‘Black Flame’ has only 10 tracks but each one packs a devastating punch. “No Less Violent” bursts out of the gate with whimsical opening notes that explode into a dizzying cacophony of melodic metal, the type of which would induce a mosh pit out of even the most lethargic of crowds. The vocal tracks are strong, clean vocals are clear and distinctive while the rough vocals are aggressive and delivered with authority. The drum and bass lines intertwine seamlessly and will make your head bang, almost involuntarily. “My Revenge” has an anthemic feel with a catchy chorus and is one of a handful of songs that open with a series of indiscernible sounds that tend to catch you off guard. Following is “More Than Mortal” which opens in a similar way.
On the back half of the album, “Knife of Gold” screeches to life with an unfocused fervor that sounds a little disconnected but the clean vocal chorus brings it together before the confusion takes hold. “Stormbringer” has an intriguing mix of time signature changes, melodic vocals and a monumental breakdown that will be really fun to witness in a live setting. “Overcast” is one of the only slower-paced songs on the album and, coincidentally, one of the longer songs as well. It also proves the range within the band musically and is a standout amongst the 10 tracks.
Overall, this is a great album. Bury Tomorrow are Metalcore titans who are proving their viability in the metal industry with every album released. If they could develop something within their sound to make them stand apart from the crowd, they could be BIG.