Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Bullet For My Valentine - Temper Temper

Tears Might Fall

Now here's an album I've been particularly excited to review. One of my favourite bands of recent years, Bullet For My Valentine have released their fourth album with the vicious name of 'Temper Temper'. The Welsh metallers are what I like to refer to as a 'Marmite band', with the obvious connotations that you'd either love them or hate them, but for me, I definitely love them, and admire how much they've progressed in the last few years. In all honesty, I had no idea what to expect from the newest release, would it sound like 'Fever' (their third album) or would they go back to their roots, and make songs that have an essence of 'The Poison' (debut album), or would it possible that they would change their sound altogether?

I must admit that I had to listen to this album multiple times before I could give it a solid review, mainly because I wasn't quite sure what I thought of it on the initial listen. It was a good album, that's all I could think. But after giving it another couple of listens I felt I could break it down more analytically. My first thought of the album was that it sounded most similar to 'Fever' than any other album they've made, which in a way is a smart move as 'Fever' was generally well-received, much more so than 'Scream, Aim, Fire'. They've stuck to using fairly basic metal riffs and have chosen to use practically the same tempo throughout. Although this annoys me slightly, I can see why they've chosen to do this. It's apparent they're a metal band for casual listeners, and they want to appeal to the most widespread audience that they can. For me, the band's priority should be to work on music that captures their essence without worrying about how big their fan base will be. It's obvious that their first album contains their best music, but they won't go back to using that as a framework for any newer material. However...

When I saw the track listing and my eyes locked into 'Tears Don't Fall Part 2', I cried a little inside. HOW could they take their best song and try and make something different of it? Basically after listening to that song, it is a highlight on the album, but doesn't need to be a sequel of a classic song for it to be appealing. The fact they included Matt Tuck growling "Let's go again!" in the song makes it clear that there's nostalgia present. In general, the songs are of a decent standard, a couple of softer moments as you would expect, but for the most part it is a hard rock/metal album. The tracks are definitely all growers, especially the singles 'Temper Temper' and 'Riot'. First listen they make you feel nonplussed, but with further listens, it is clear why they are the choices of singles. The short, but catchy nature of the songs are great, and will be in their live arsenal for sure this year, and for years to come.

It has to be said though that it is probably the least best album they've made (I won't say worst, because that would imply that the album is bad, when it is in fact mediocre) and the lyrical content is ridiculous at times, so much so that you just know the band need to hire a lyricist to write their songs. Also another criticism is that the songs need to be crafted more intricately, and bundled with well thought out solos. Anyway, it may appear like I've given a bad name to a great band, this isn't the case at all. They're still one of my favourite bands, and I'm seeing them live twice this year. Their older hits will always be my favourite, as well as my undying love for most of 'Fever', but 'Temper Temper' just doesn't fulfil any expectations. Hopefully they'll realise that they need to make an album for all of those fans who have stuck with them from day one, otherwise they'll end up taking the same route Linkin Park have.

Stand-out tracks on the album: 'Dirty Little Secret', 'Riot', 'Tears Don't Fall, Part 2' <--- (If you ignore the name and just concentrate on the song, you'll enjoy it!)

Rating: 6 out of 10

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