Bullet For My Valentine - Scream Aim Fire
Bullet for My Valentine seems to have written the book on contemporary heavy metal. It's only taken the Welsh group two albums to find the sound that Metallica's fallen fans have been craving for ever since the real Metallica fell into a ditch and died some 20 years ago. That's not to say that BFMV have just copied the Metallica playbook and pasted it into their album. Influences are obvious, but what this band does so different from the rest is give it some passion. Music nowadays, especially metal, has this stigma attached that all you need to do is learn to play extremely fast and shout about the devil and how great being a bastard is. That may have been the winning formula 30 or 40 years ago, but it just seems juvenile and lazy nowadays. Thankfully, Scream Aim Fire is here to rescue us from the "fake metal" and remind us of the glory days of long hair and music with meaning.
Some people might complain that Bullet for My Valentine doesn't do anything drastically different with Scream Aim Fire and that they ape the style of earlier bands. What these people don't understand is that you can't really change the metal archetype. It's always going to be lightning fast guitar, thunderous drums and singers getting into screaming contests with themselves during recording. That is what made metal unique and so revolutionary when it was first being played. My point is that you shouldn't fix what isn't broken. And indeed, BFMV does not rewrite metal history, but they are one of the very few bands that show promise to make a big impact in future metal lore.
The track list is your typical heavy metal affair. The music is great fun to listen to and it creates those awkward moments where you want to sing along to the chorus but you don't want to ruin your voice, so you mumble the words, which is enjoyable whether you're at the concert or on your way to work. But the longer you listen, the harder it is to tell when one track ends and the other begins. A little variation is nice, but for what's here, there's not much to complain about. A solid effort from a rising band. Hopefully Bullet for My Valentine has studied their history and won't take the dreaded "Metallica Plunge" and leave another crowd with giant heavy metal blue balls.
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