Release DetailsLABEL Victory
RELEASED ON 9/18/2007
Between the Buried and Me
posted on 9/2007 By:
To say the least, Alaska was not the kind of Between the Buried and Me album I was hoping for in 2005. That's not to say I ever bought into the conventional wisdom that this band was incapable of writing songs, or that none of the various styles they tried to cohere “belonged” together. I actually just thought Alaska sounded a little sterile, and a little too obsessed with complex death metal riffs that just didn't sound good. However, I do respect this band's ambition and consider them capable of writing some pretty immersing material, no matter how pretentious and self absorbed it may come across. Case in point, Colors is by far the most ambitious BTBAM album yet, and in no way will it quiet those who criticize this band's scatter-brained compositional style. But, for me, it is one hell of a ride.
“Foam Born (A) The Backtrack” starts the album off on a subdued note with Tommy Rogers showcasing his creative debt to Freddie Mercury. But, the ballad is short lived, as the interrupting “(B) Decade of Statues” offers the expected technical and jarring death metal/metalcore most have come to expect from BTBAM. This isn't exactly the opening statement I wanted to hear. Fortunately, the following tracks, “Informal Gluttony,” “Sun of Nothing” and “Ants of the Sky,” offer some of the most exhilarating BTBAM material to date. “Informal Gluttony” is probably the most focused and linear song this band has written since their self titled debut. Driven by eastern melodies and deft tremolo riffing, this is the kind of song I imagine many BTBAM detractors have been waiting for this band to write for a long time, as it shows them being progressive, but not zany. Interestingly, each song on Colors segues into the next. As such, the band is able to create some serious forward momentum. “Sun of Nothing” and “Ants of the Sky” showcase two very reassuring things. The first is Paul Waggoner's resurgence as an excellent writer of sonorous and melodic guitar riffs; the second is the band's willingness to use that ability to create massive surges and crescendos. The bridge between the two tracks is an absolute feast for those who love to hear great guitar players simply unleashing everything in their arsenal. For me, these tracks offer so much of what I missed on Alaska, and that's the band just indulging the listener with exhilarating, melodic acrobatics.
However, the definitive statement here is closer “White Walls.” On this final track Waggoner plays like a man on fire, only briefly wandering into that perilous latter Opeth-ian style of heartless riffing where he so often found himself on Alaska. Not to undersell the talents of his bandmates, as for once the strength of a BTBAM album lies in its songs and not just fleeting moments, but in many ways it is Waggoner who elevates this album to its highest highs.
I'm a Between the Buried and Me supporter. I wouldn't call myself an avid fan, but I see a lot of talent in this band and I've been waiting for them to cash in with a great album since they first showed potential and foresight with The Silent Circus. Colors is the album I've always kind of hoped they would make. While not a perfect album, it's an endlessly compelling one that invites repeat listens, and rewards more with each spin. I've had my fair share of ups and downs with this band, and almost every moment on Colors is as up as I've heard this band go.
Register to post comments.
RelatedBetween the Buried and Me
The Parallax II: Future Sequence
10/9/2012 Between the Buried and Me
The Parallax: Hypersleep Dialogues
4/12/2011 Between the Buried and Me
The Great Misdirect
10/26/2009 Between the Buried and Me
The Anatomy Of
6/13/2006 Between the Buried and Me
9/6/2005 Between the Buried and Me
The Silent Circus