Want the quickest assessment of Bring Me the Horizon’s latest chain in their ever evolving career? Try sticking your head inside a blender and pressing ‘chop’. This isn’t a notion toward their recent release, There Is A Hell Believe Me I’ve Seen It. There Is A Heaven Let’s Keep It A Secret, being awful as much as it is about the inconsistency of it coupled with its overutilization of electronic elements. The latter point is something that should have been wholly expected since with each subsequent release the Bring Me the Horizon (now to be referred to as BMTH) delves further from death metal tendencies and closer to full-blown post-hardcore. Embracing everything from poppy guest spots, i.e. the stunningly beautiful Lights, to cleans that rival the soul of the radio, BMTH have consistently shown a thirst for searching outside their stagnant boundaries. These aren’t negative attributes, however, they are welcomed reprieves from the extremely cluttered sound BMTH entered the scene with, but they still have some maturity to develop before the sound they’re vying for solidifies itself.
The most obvious change from the good ol’ deathcore regime is the inclusion of (gasp!) an orchestra and huge symphonic insertions; these help create the epic feeling BMTH are so obviously lusting after with lyrical content centered on the battle between good and evil not to mention every single letter in that damn album title. The orchestrations are a nice and often beautiful touch but are frequently overused, almost immediately at that, with opening track “Crucify Me” submersing itself in a lush atmosphere that cuts blocks for breakdowns and chants of the album title to take course. In fact it takes a few minutes for the album to find any stable footing to run on with the first two tracks being completely unremarkable, save the lavished ending to “Crucify Me” bearing witness to Lights’ sung conviction stronger than that of the band she supports. First single “It Never Ends” really provides a nice balance to all the new elements BMTH are introducing, hyper choruses strung with poignant, albeit, unoriginal breakdowns, symphony induced “ooooo’s”, and aggressive shifts in hooks.
It’s a pretty predictable ride from then on with few unexpected turns in the travel. While the track placement couldn’t have been more unorthodox, with constant shifting of soft song/fast song, the way they’re executed relieves the stress to the up and down disorder. “Don’t Go” is a beautiful ballad excelled with a gorgeous duet between Oli Sykes and Lights who together soar over guitars solemnly strummed and drumming that cadences itself to near death. You’ve also got your obligatory mosh pit anthems, “Alligator Blood” and “Blacklist”, the former being a smash and dasher while the latter is literally a four minute breakdown. Both benefit from Oli finally dropping the obnoxious tonal shouting he’s adopted and breaks out the low ranges he’s mastered – easily the best instrumental force in the band when he tries. This is best evident in the forceful closer “Fox and the Wolf” which dabbles around dissonance and visceral tempo changes blending the style of vocal interplay between Josh Scogin (The Chariot) and Oli Sykes; affirming it as the album’s strongest song next to “It Never Ends”.
It’s hard to fault the band for their aspirations on this record. They’ve grown a considerable amount since Suicide Season and are hardly the same band that produced This Is What the Edge of Your Seat Was Made For. Unfortunately, their lyrical content still rambles around broken hearts and disappointment in the “tough” life of a rock star and couldn’t have been delivered in more clichéd fashions – “I know I said / My heart beats for you / I was lying girl / My heart beats for two / Everything I touch turns to stone!!!”. However these are small quips in comparison to the stagnation found throughout the record. There is little branching from this “new” core sound that BMTH haven’t even perfected yet – though they come damn close on “Blessed With A Curse” incorporating the albums sole solo. This problem is magnified with each guest addition in which all invitee’s evoke more emotion than BMTH themselves. Josh Scogin’s twenty second performance capsizes Oli in a battle that should be no contest for the front man, and Lights absolutely shines every time the mic captures her elegant voice. Though fear not BMTH fans because the promise is there. There is a fire burning throughout There Is A Hell... that was completely absent from Suicide Season maiming its progression. The band feel comfortable with the style they’re still transitioning to, and once Oli finds confidence in his vivacious growls again there’ll be no stopping them from reaching their horizon.
3. It Never Ends
5. Don't Go
6. Home Sweet Hole
7. Alligator Blood
11. Blessed With A Curse
12. Fox and the Wolf
Bring Me The Horizon is a five-piece band from Sheffield, England. Despite only forming in March 2004, the band has gathered a surprisingly large fan base both in the UK and the U.S. Their debut EP, This Is What The Edge Of Your Seat Was Made For, came out in December 2004 and was the first release from the independent label Thirty Days Of Night Records. The band has since embarked on a number of UK tours supporting well-established bands such as Bleeding Through and Aiden, and also signed with Visible Noise Records in the autumn of 2005. ... read more