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Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Bury Your Dead: It's Nothing Personal

Year released: 2009
Official website: www.buryyourdead.com, www.myspace.com/buryyourdead
Label: Victory Records


1. Hurting Not Helping [4:10]

2. Without You [4:38]

3. Broken Body [4:30]

4. The Great Demonizer [3:48]

5. Dead End Lovesong [4:43]

6. Swan Song [4:00]

7. Lakota [3:02]

8. The Forgotten [4:21]

9. Lion's Den [4:29]

10. Legacy Of Ashes [4:28]

11. Closed Eyes [4:51]

12. Enough [1:33]


Don't be fooled by the album name. BYD themselves have said that what they mean by naming this album in such a way, is really just the opposite of what it says. It IS something personal, at least to the band members that is. This 5th album by groove metalcore band, Bury Your Dead, who formed in 2001 and hails from Massachusetts, USA, is the second album the band is doing with new permanent vocalist Myke Terry, and he is doing a fairly decent job of continuing the BYD tradition of hardcore music packed full of fretboard mayhem and groovy, heavy beats.

Take a listen!: Even the dead would headbang to these groovy beats

Exploding right into your ears from the very first second with mean, catchy guitar riffs, BYD's first single off this album, "Hurting Not Helping" certainly makes a very explicit summary about what they have more or less been through over the turmoil that was 2008. Apart from the frustration expressed in the songs' lyrics, you can also practically almost feel BYD's frustration with the s***t they have been through trickling into your ears in the form of vibrating air particles. Although heavy and hardcore, BYD also manages to bring about their own unique brand of melancholy on this album, proving once again that metalcore isn't necessarily always only about angst-driven extreme music. However, there are many repetitive guitar riffs on most of the other songs on this album that doesn't serve any purpose other than losing the attention of the listener fast. Furthermore, the guitar solos are mostly boring, with only the two at the start of the tracks "The Great Demonizer" and "Lion's Den" sounding more melodic and memorable than on the other tracks. The drumbeats are fairly more complicated than the dull guitar riffs, and shine best on the track "Lakota". Vocals-wise, Myke makes good harsh vocals with his rough voice, but his clean vocals sound lifeless and flat. That is something that he has to polish up on future albums. BYD's new style is almost similar to their old style; they still dish out punishing drum beats, testosterone-pumping guitar breakdowns, and ugly yet world-weary vocals to create a headbangin' mosh pit of songs for anyone needing an emotional outlet to let out their suppressed frustration or angst with the world. But other than that, this album is really not fantastic, and will soon be forgotten with the times.

Oh, I forgot to mention - Slipknot fans who have never heard BYD before, give them a try, as BYD does bear some resemblance to that group of Halloween enthusiasts. Although BYD is not as strong in the image department as Slipknot, they do triumph over them in terms of making heavier music that gives off a satisfying bunch of raw energy. However, Slipknot does make more memorable melodies and guitar solos than BYD. Hardcore fans of the old BYD however, would not like this new BYD. Sure, they are still heavy like before and all, but having a new vocalist really changes the feel of an otherwise familiar band. It is like replacing Chestor Bennington on Linkin Park with another guy someday, which will definitely cause LP's popularity to dip sharply since Chestor himself has more or less single-handedly molded that harsh, constipated sound of LP's music. Less hardcore fans of the old BYD however, would most probably welcome this new BYD with a spanking new stereo set to better headbang to this renewed attack by a revived BYD. As for those who haven't heard of BYD and wants to try them out now, go ahead, but don't expect them to be as good as other big metalcore bands you have heard before.

These hardcore rockers are: From left to right - Mark Castillo (Drums), Brendan "Slim B." MacDonald (Guitar), Myke Terry (Vocals), Aaron "Bubble" Patrick (Bass Guitar), Chris Towning (Guitar)

As the saying goes, simplicity is beauty. The album artwork is certainly thought-provoking... because it really makes one wonder what is up with that overly simple scenery. Perhaps the barren land juxtaposed against a clear blue sky is supposed to be a reference to the chaotic year BYD had in 2008?

Overall, "It's Nothing Personal" is a rather lackluster metalcore album, only pick up this album in stores if you are a hardcore BYD fan. If you are someone wanting to try out metalcore, don't start from BYD as they are an average metalcore band to start from. Start from consistently good metalcore veterans such as AILD, Killswitch Engage, Lamb Of God, or excellent metalcore newbies such as Bullet For My Valentine.

Drummer: Check out an insane Mark

Bury Your Damn Dead!: The music video for "Hurting Not Helping"; the crowd-favourite gimmick "Wall Of Death" at live metal performances can be seen here too

Verdict: 7.5 / 10

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