Funny story I have today.
There is this Metalcore band called Bullet For My Valentine (BFMV) from Wales that is kinda, sorta popular… I guess. Anyways I heard of them and I finally got around to watching some of their music videos and live performances.
First thing I noticed: Despite what anyone tells you, they have emo influences. They may not be true emo, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have emo influences. Bullet for My Valentine is a emo name, they have at least one emo sorta love-song and furthermore, the screaming in that song is very emo. I admit, bands like Killswitch Engage have similar emo songs, but the difference is, somehow, Killswitch Engage pulls this off without sounding emo. Don’t ask how, they just do, it probably has someone to do with the vocal styles they employ.
Second of all, BFMV have weak clean vocals. Their lead vocalist messed up his voice a while back, but even before that he wasn’t anything special. The guy is also their rythmn guitarist, and while there is nothing wrong with doing that, I really think it’s a shame that the band didn’t realize they had bad clean vocals (and it seems the majority of their songs employs LOTS of clean vocals) and found someone who can you know… sing?
Finally, interestingly enough, BFMV has someone managed to combined a sorta Emo sound with… Thrash. Without a doubt, they are channeling a thrash sound and appearance in all the videos I watched. Their solos really reminded me of my Master of Puppets CD.
Now, here are my problems with BFMV: First of all, I realize many bands do not have good vocals, this does not bother me. What does bother me is that these guys, basically, have bad clean vocals. Ryan Clark, Demon Hunter’s lead vocalist, while no master without a doubt, puts these guys to shame with his clean vocals. Yes, they have brilliant guitarists, but in the world of heavy metal, I’ve noticed that every band has a brilliant lead guitarist: a good lead guitarist isn’t all you need in a bad. I mean, looking at it, even Alestorm’s vocals, which are really quite bad, are better, not because they are “better” but because they channel the right vibe. This guy was just bad…
Second of all, I’m no fan of thrash. That’s a personal thing, I’ll admit, and I won’t argue if you like thrash then there is still no way you’ll enjoy this band because they are horrible or something, because that’s not true, it’s quite possible you’ll still like them.
Finally, Bullet For My Valentine has to be the worst name I have ever heard for any band that plays any form of metal that is not Gothic. I mean yes, Killswitch Engage sounds kinda emo, but the meaning behind it isn’t emo at all. They said when they formed the band, it was like someone had taken the big master control switch and turned it from on to off, Killswitch Engage. Makes a lot of sense, eh? As I Lay Dying, I admit, is somewhat emo, but at least I don’t feel any emo vibes coming from their music. Seriously, why call yourself Bullet for my Valentine, and then claim you’re hard rock while playing a combination of emo-influenced Hardcore and Thrash Metal (someone said Thrashcore… that kinda works, if you assume the “core” refers to Hardcore).
Oh, and they can talk all they want about being “hard rock” but I’m sorry, anyone who goes to a METAL Festival like Wacken and uses the amount of screaming in the particular fashion they do cannot, in my book, be considered Hard Rock. Maybe not Metal, but surely not Hard Rock. Actually, that itself kinda bothers me. Make up all sorts of stupid names for your style of music (Marco called Nightwish Gothic Symphonic Power Metal, Alestorm refers to itself as True Scottish Pirate Metal), but at least be somewhat accurate. Saying, “We’re hard rock,” and then screaming your face off right before performing a face-melter right out of Metallica’s book is lying, don’t do that.
So yes, if you didn’t notice, I thought they kinda… were not that good. I guess I’ll have to stick to Demon Hunter, As I Lay Dying and Killswitch Engage for my good Metalcore.
And right now I’m listening to Eluveitie, because there is something amazing about the combination of Flutes and Death Metal. *nods*