Release DetailsLABEL Victory
RELEASED ON 10/24/2004
Bury Your Dead
Cover Your Tracks
posted on 12/2004 By:
To anyone that remembers Hamartia, New England's Bury Your Dead are a mosh-infested hardcore act featuring ex-members of said band. One of them went on to work with Between The Buried And Me, the other, going to Blood Has Been Shed. Attracting enough hype and attention, after breaking up and reforming, they've signed with Victory Records - a move which almost ensures them some sort of widespread success.
Although it's hardcore, it's metallic hardcore. Still, to anyone who knows anything about this genre, it should be abundantly clear that even with the mention of "metal tendencies", most metalheads definitely won't like it. And yes, it sounds like Hatebreed, which is beautiful and makes my job easier, as I'm sure a lot of people out there couldn't care less about hardcore, yet probably haven't avoided hearing about Jamey Jasta and the rest of the group.
Chock full of breakdowns and acceptable time changes, Bury Your Dead will easily captivate a few people right off the bat. While maybe impressive to some the first time around, the real downfall is that the record has very little staying power and wanders far too much. "Vanilla Sky" begins with slight bending in the main riff, sounding borrowed from a later Pantera album, but quickly manifests into a relatively standard and bland track that relies too heavily on the muli-tracked vocals to retain interest. This idea saves a lot of bands, however, vocalist Mat Bruso has a powerful yet monotone bark that isn't quite enough to pull Bury Your Dead onto higher ground. And the lyrics, now don't get me wrong - as a metalhead, I'm almost obligated to disregard lyrics. But when I hear some tough-guy sounds crossed with "everyone makes mistakes in love," and "just thinking of your touch makes me feel so empty," my jaw drops. These are ballads put to a slightly more creative but less memorable Hatebreed record. "Eyes Wide Shut" has a ridiculous guitar break that sounds like someone's stepping on a cable - why anyone would try to incorporate something like that into a track is beyond me, let alone end the song with a melancholy piano passage. I guess I'm entirely clueless as to the decisions made in the creation of the album. "Magnolia" starts sounding like In Flames and degenerates back into the descending moshy sound you'd expect, and then you get an intentionally undermixed reprisal of the melodic sound. It's probably one of their best tracks, innovatively speaking, but it comes across as something that was cut and pasted together by a thirteen year old. A really cool thirteen year old, at least. "Mission: Impossible 2" leaves me wondering if perhaps BYD has ADHD, introducing artificial harmonics into their sound seven tracks into Cover Your Tracks.
"The Color Of Money" and "Legend" are both two great tracks, but I can't understand what the rest of the songs are lacking. Maybe they just don't say their band name enough, like on "Losin' It", where the only lyric is "Bury your fucking dead".
Cover Your Tracks probably has one of the sharpest mixes I've ever heard, which for once, isn't exactly a great thing. The guitar tones are abrupt and sound like Sepultura's Roots - a terrible sound for a hardcore band. It's clinical and sterile, and approaching nu-metal quality at times.
Hardcore music in general isn't criticized over how well a band innovates, but rather, how well a band perpetuates a sound. Cover Your Tracks doesn't really do either very well. It's good for a quick burst of aggression, but remains largely disposable. Yes, it's cute of Bury Your Dead to have named their songs after Tom Cruise movies, and I admire them for that. One thing I can praise them for however, is the fact that their songs, no matter how inconsistent, are generally two and a half minutes in length. Absolutely perfect - it makes the album more than tolerable. I think these guys could really go somewhere if they decide to take what they're best at playing and just overemphasize it. In the meantime, I'll be waiting and wading through song after song on Cover Your Tracks in order to find the good parts - which there are, despite my incessant criticism.
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