Bullet For My Valentine
11 February 2013
by Raziq Rauf
Something occurred to me whilst hearing ‘Temper Temper’ on Radio 1 whilst lying in bed. I thought the title track to the Welsh quartet’s fourth album was a fucking abomination. Causing short circuits in my brain, however, was the fact I also genuinely enjoy going to see this band live. This handy combination of first-hand knowledge of my past actions coupled with my instant reaction to their shitty song on the radio could mean only one thing: I only enjoy Bullet For My Valentine when I’m drunk.
The question, therefore, is: How drunk do I have to be to start enjoying this album? Let’s test that out.
Beer 1 No good. I still hate everything. In fact, ‘Breaking Point’ is such a bad song with its pained chugging riffs and Matt Tuck’s whiny vocals that I end up downing my beer. It’s only a bottle, but I really can’t be going through a dozen beers in an hour.
Beer 2 ‘Truth Hurts’. The lyrics are making me feel self-conscious. It’s a song about substance abuse. Matt Tuck’s first words are about having one more beer and I fear it’ll take much more than that to be able to ignore how bad his wordsmithery is. The title track comes on, buzzing around like a fly and it sounds no less tedious than the first time. A bit more so, if anything.
Beer 3 I hear the start of ‘P.O.W.’ whilst at the fridge and it sounds like classic Bullet from back when they used to be full of potential but then it breaks down into soft rock bollocks and I lose interest. The chorus has potential, however. Hmmm. ‘Dirty Little Secrets’ builds harmlessly enough and launches into a decent riff before dropping into crap again. It’s like they’ve got a fucking formula. This is making me angry. The chorus is too shit to redeem this. It gets worse with ‘Leech’. Those trademark Tuck lyrics come into play. The shit that comes out of his mouth makes this review seem like early Palahniuk in comparison.
“Tell me why you keep crashing the party.” SHUT UP, TUCK. You’re killing whatever paltry buzz I’m getting by drinking beer alone in my front room whilst listening to the biggest British metal band of the past 20 years.
Beer 4 Spilled whilst flailing arm unecessarily. Gutted.
Beer 4a It’s the first proper ballad. I’m listening to ‘Dead To The World’ and it’s so ridiculously schmaltzy. There’s beer all over my hands, though, so I don’t even want to punch myself in the face right now. It’s so bad. There were some genuinely great Metal Ballads on The Poison. This doesn’t even warrant real comparison. Following that up with ‘Riot’ is a masterstroke. Write a song that makes people want to die and then put a worse one on straight after! It’s so painfully metal that it sounds like it’s made of plastic. Fuck this. FUCK THIS. I skip the song, but then feel bad, because I’m performing a reviewing duty and have to put myself through it. Bah.
Beer 5 ‘Saints N Sinners’. No. It’s like they’ve regressed to some ridiculous club on the Sunset Strip circa 1990. Just in time to have caught the tail-end of the good stuff, but just late enough to look like they’re faking it. ‘Tears Don’t Fall (Part 2)’ actually sounds ok, but then you remember it’s because it’s a shit version of the actual ‘Tears Don’t Fall’, which still stands up as a good song now. A pale imitation of a good song isn’t gonna swing it right now. Last song! ‘Livin Life (On The Edge Of A Knife)’ is the best title in the world. I don’t even care what it sounds like but it sounds like the rest of the album: a bit dull.
Beer 6 First track’s starting to sound ok. It’s just familiarity… Yep, the vocals are still bullshit. Great! Fuck this band! The main riff of ‘Truth Hurts’ is sounding pretty imperious and Killswitchy this time and I can’t really focus on his words. OK, it’s starting. ‘Temper Temper’… I get it. My foot is tapping. Still can’t get the thought of a Tempur mattress out of my head. I fixate when I’m drunk. And what? ‘P.O.W.’ sounds like a chugging beast now, though. Yes! Oh and then it lets me down again. STOP WHINING, TUCK. I’m hungry. Making toast is better than listening to ‘Dirty Little Secrets’ and ‘Leech’ be utter shit. Does that guy ever shut up?
Beer 8 This is fucking great. I can skip the shit songs. Bye, ‘Riot’. Actually, I’m just going to put on another album because I’m not stuck at a venue with my mates.
Sounds like: the howls of post-beer goggles regret, alcoholism, self-loathing
Top tracks: anything on The Poison, Hand of Blood