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Between The Buried And Me The Silent Circus

Between The Buried And Me - The Silent Circus
01. Lost Perfection
02. Coulrophobia/Anablephobia
03. Camilla Rhodes
04. Mordecai
05. Reaction
06. Shevanel Take 2
07. Ad A Dglgmut
08. Destructo Spin
09. Aesthetic
10. The Need For Repetition
2003 Victory Records

Reviewed by: Graham Landers   //   Published: 10/3/2003

With a simple yet artsy layout and an equally abstract title ("The Silent Circus"), BTBAM have made a somewhat valiant effort at producing a memorable album. But as with the majority of metal (metalcore) these days, they saw a niche that wasn’t theirs and dove face first into it with no precautions. This is a risky venture and rarely executed in a way that lets the listener feel it was a natural progression, rather than an attempt to emulate another formidable band. Unfortunately for Between The Buried and Me, I'm having a hard time buying it.

First things first, I was under the impression that BTBAM were a melodic metal band that fused hardcore and thrash elements into their sound Apparently now they are a grind band that fuses elements of hardcore and progressive metal into their sound, almost a complete departure from their previous material, found on their debut and demo. I must give them credit for this ballsy approach, but it could have been executed a little better.

Although the press sheet contains quotes from their members saying that “we are better songwriters,” I beg to differ. The transitions aren’t smooth at all and it makes it very hard to follow along, especially on “Mordecai.” This track sees the band start off grind and end in an almost 80’s Chicago (the band, not the movie) sounding ballad. In between you have traces of trash and an Opeth-style acoustic passage with some very emoish clean vocals. There is a Solefald-esque clean vocal part I liked on the first track, but it’s more of a listen-to-once and skip-over track (as a whole). Did I mention the Every Time I Die clapping part that appears midway through the track Rather annoying.

Throughout this band’s three year career, they've never really had a good vocalist. The screaming is not executed properly as there is just not enough power behind it. It sounds like its all from the throat, much like with the singer of Avenged Sevenfold. It’s like nails on a chalk board, not my thing at all. The guitarists are amazing players, but the songwriting isn’t very good, as was told earlier. There is no real beginning, middle or end. It’s a bunch of random parts jumbled together that make for a headache when you try to make sense of it. I’m sure this was the intent. For this reason I would highly recommend skipping over the first three songs on this record and starting with “Mordecai.” Not a personal favorite, but it's more listenable than its predecessors.

The strongest transition on the record is from the ambient “reaction,” with subtle clean voice, to the soft rock track “(Shevanel Take 2)” found immediately after. As far fetched as it might sound, this is the best track on the album and it’s the most out of place.

There is a huge The Red Chord influence felt on this entire record. I can almost assure you that any grind found on this album wouldn’t have made its way onto this record if it weren’t for them. Much of it is almost too similar for comfort. The best part of this band is the drumming, which is excellent. The blackmetalish blasting fury at the end of “Destructo Spin” is evidence of that. I just can’t get into this band because it all just doesn’t come together smoothly.

Bottom Line: Some people are going to hate that I pointed out what they actually thought all along about this band, but were too shy to say aloud for fear their friends might hear (and quickly ostracize them). I’m not dissing these dudes. I just think their time has yet to come. I’m not impressed with what I’ve heard thus far in their three-year career and I hope that things change in the future. There is a lot of talent here and with some good songwriting, they could do wonders.

anonymous   posted 10/23/2014 6:41:12 AM
This guy is an idiot. He, like most of his reviewer colleagues on this site all have the same problem, they all possess the inability to be objective. They spend time ripping apart things that they don't like rather than trying to look at it for what it is. And I'm sorry but the first 2 tracks are what make the album so fu/cking epic. Tommy Rogers vocals' are exactly what this album requires to maintain it's raw power.
anonymous   posted 7/29/2013 1:59:50 PM
Jim_   posted 2/21/2011 5:44:20 PM
and I make serious ca$h bitchin at shitty writers
Matt NC_   posted 1/18/2011 6:58:03 AM
Nobody who deserves to live really watches MTV anyway, not very good bragging rights Graham Landers. As for the review...I will make sure not to read any paltry shit you write again. Your opinion no longer matters, from what I can tell from EVERY comment, to anyone who knows jack shit about music. Find a job you don't suck at, apparently Lambgoat had the right idea and dropped your ass.
Graham Landers_   posted 11/18/2010 7:43:56 PM
f*ck off gays. Now I write reviews 4 mTV and make serious ca$h. All thanks to this great review and my excellent resume.

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