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Andrew’s Judgmental Album Reviews: Bullet for My Valentine – Bullet for My Valentine (2021)

There’s been a common theme in the JAR. Bands who fell off in the last few years have used the pandemic to rebound a bit. Does BfMV find who they used to be or remain dead to me?

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There’s been a common theme in the JAR. Bands who fell off in the last few years have used the pandemic to rebound a bit. Does BfMV find who they used to be or remain dead to me?

So for anyone unaware, Bullet for My Valentine are a Welsh band, not random North American musicians. They did however rise to fame with heavy air play around the mid 00s, as well as two songs in popular video games. Hand of Blood was on Need for Speed: Most Wanted and 4 Words (to Choke Upon) was in Madden ’06.

They fell into that Metalcore era which contained a bunch of fairly relevant bands, off the top of my head I can think of; All That Remains, Trivium, As I Lay Dying, Atreyu, Killswitch Engage, to name a few. Now sadly for most of the Metalcore bands, around 2010 they all took a weird turn and lost me. Radio friendly approaches, arena rock, country covers, weird hard rock barely metal moments; it’s really hard to describe how hard they all hit their collective heads for about a decade.

Apparently Trivium’s newest album isn’t bad, but I never thought Trivium was good…so I’ve been steering clear of that. I brought that up however, because it seems like the Metalcore bands are trying to rediscover their older sound and that’s the initial reaction of this album.

So we’ve got a small bit of Hopium for this album. Let’s see if it’s rewarded!

  • Artist: Bullet for My Valentine
  • Album: Bullet for My Valentine (2021)
  • Label: Spinefarm
  • Total Track Time: 47:47

Parasite kicks the album off and it was also a single we heard prior to the album’s release. Initially my complaint is that the radio static intro goes too long. They’re flipping through their more popular songs, almost like a retrospective, but it goes on for what feels like nearly a minute…which is too damn long. When the song officially starts, it’s very heavy Numetal influenced. Sounds like old school Slipknot. The biggest positive to take from this song is Bullet is heading back to their early 00s and it’s about time. They lost their direction around 2010, and I stopped caring about their existence. Knives is an interesting song, very mid-00s, guitar tone reminds me of like Disturbed and their more well-known stuff. Also the lyrics are pretty cool; “Bring out the knives to cut and divide, Another scar for memories – Bring out the knives to cut and divide, Let ’em breathe, watch ’em burn in the fire“. There’s something cool about the imagery of the knives cutting away the memories and creating them. It’s a screaming Metalcore banger, but it has its moments man. My Reverie is one of those classic Bullet style songs that slows things down while not losing the anger like a few of their older hits. The mixture of a more aggressive bridge and chorus sewn together with cleaner/calmer verses is exactly what I expect from Bullet.

No Happy Ever After doesn’t really breathe life into aggression with the title, but this starts harsh and the chorus has the exact same vocal tone as Tears Don’t Fall. Which you may not think is impressive since it’s the same singer, but that song came out 16 years ago, and a lot can happen to vocal tone and range in a decade and a half. Can’t Escape the Waves goes for an interesting ambiance of subtle guitar tones to depict a mostly calm ocean and then they say the title of the song to a crash in out heavier guitar and drums. So they go for more of an atmospheric feeling with this song with getting pulled under the waters or being adrift in troubled waters. It’s a feeling most of us can relate to, and it’s not terrible. It’s definitely a little sparse and simple compared to the album so far. Weakest song thus far but it’s almost appropriate since the song feels like it drifts listlessly until the chorus kicks in with the fierce arpeggios and then back to drifting. Maybe a little too artistic for this album.

Bastards okay so we get an arena rock sounding song with a megaphone effect and the call and response vibe is really there. But coming off a weaker song, the fact this starts off slow and then starts to pick up a little with a catchy chorus that’s easy to sing along to is very smart song placement. If you came in looking for the Metalcore, you’ll probably find this song generic and sort of a trap for a lot of the 00s bands lately, but I definitely am digging the song.  Rainbow Veins is not an Owl City cover in case there was a question. This song seems to be more about drug addiction. Body shakes – I got rainbows running through my veins – And now – I just can’t come down” are the lines that kick off the song. The verses continue about another dose keeps me sedated, another day but I don’t want to face it – these again are probably very relatable. It definitely checks the Hot Topic box of the mid-00s where it’s heavy and emo all at the same time; much like a lot of Metalcore and Hardcore back in the day. Eww…I just referred to 2005 as back in the day. ANYWAY – my own mortality aside, this is the first song in a couple that sounds like it could’ve been picked off the first few albums. Also I like the guitar effect adding to the spiraling aspect of coming down off a high/withdrawals and going back through the motions.

Shatter was actually the first single I heard about a month or so ago that made me stop and go “Wait, this is current Bullet”. Very heavy, what sounds like a bit on the down tuned side, more power chords and chug riffs; with the verses sung in a pleading way and then morphing into the Metalcore growls that foreshadow how they hit the chorus elegantly. Where I said Can’t Escape the Waves was simple but also a little too artistic and sparse, this is simple in the fact that it’s a very formulaic metal song in the Metalcore/NuMetal genre, and it just works. It’s not boring, it might not be a grand leap in music, but it’s just a solid song that uses a lot of common elements well and doesn’t disappoint. Paralysed really comes in fast like Hand of Blood, but then continues through with more of a Thrash tone like Testament. Not a bad concept, since I am a big Thrash/Speed fan, and the more this album goes on; the more the radio static intro to Parasite makes sense. This feels like a few songs are chronicling the different sounds of Bullet, while focusing on their ‘golden era’ as opposed to the radio friendly trash can stuff of the last decade.

Death By A Thousand Cuts we get to the final song of the album, and the title is definitely sets an interesting expectation for the ending. I was concerned for a second, because the fist verse is echoed out and sounds like the later era of Linkin Park where it was just whiney and awful. But then the harder vocals and instrumentation kicks in. This is still in more of Thrash vein, but I can’t really vibe with chorus. I usually like how they blend the more nasally clean vocals for the Hot Topic emotion, but it just sticks out too much in this song. My guess is this is closer to their more recent sound, which while they try to save it with a decent solo and heavier accompaniment, the chorus kills this song for me. There’s reasons why I mentioned Bullet has been dead to me for like a decade.

Big oof boys and girls. While there were some questionable moments through the album, the last song is a major negative to me. Not major like I’ll weigh it heavier, but it just really ends things on such a sour note for me; like a bad finish to a wrestling main event. If I look at this as more of a return to form, then this does a great job at keeping me hopeful. Bullet was the band I was the most into in during the mid-00s when we had the acts previously mentioned going strong ; then they disappointed me after Scream Aim Fire. But now they are finally trending in the right direction, so one small shred of hope has returned.

My hope better not be spurned like the last song of theirs I could tolerate, Your Betrayal. They betrayed me once…fool me once, shame on me…fool me twice…uhh…won’t get fooled again!

 

Final Judgment: 6.45/10


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Chairshot Radio: Musical Chairs S2:E2- Miles Davis & Black Star Riders [081622]

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Chairshot Radio: Musical Chairs S2:E2- Miles Davis & Black Star Riders [081622]

S2:E2 of Musical Chairs sees the guys go in different but equally interesting directions. Pat covers the incomparable Miles Davis, one of the most influential, and important musicians of all-time. Dave then discusses Black Star Riders, an off-shoot, of sorts, of Thin Lizzy with their own unique  sound and history. Tune in and enjoy!

Today’s hosts: Dave Ungar (@AttitudeAgg) and Patrick O’Dowd (@WrestlngRealist)

  • Musical Chairs focuses in on Miles Davis & Black Star Riders.

About Chairshot Radio

The rebirth of Chairshot Radio will see a rotating cast of hosts delivering you a new show EVERY day. Sports, Entertainment and Sports Entertainment is the umbrella under which we seek to invade your earballs. So sit back, relax and LET US IN…

For the latest, greatest and up to datest in everything pro wrestling, sports and entertainment head to TheChairshot.com and remember to ALWAYS #UseYourHead.

About the Chairshot Radio Network

Created in 2017, the Chairshot Radio Network presents you with the best in wrestling and wrestling crossover podcasts, including POD is WAR, Women’s Wrestling Talk, Chairshot Radio daily editions, The #Miranda Show, Badlands’ Wrestling Mount Rushmores, The Outsider’s Edge, DWI Podcast, Bandwagon Nerds, the Greg DeMarco Show, 3 Man Weave, Five Rounds, Turnbuckle Talk, The Reaction and more! You can find these great shows each week at theChairshot.com and through our distribution partners, including podcasting’s most popular platforms.

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Bandwagon Nerds #144: Ezra Miller is Trash

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Bandwagon Nerds #144: Ezra Miller is Trash

This week on the Bandwagon, Patrick O’Dowd and David Ungar revisit the state of DC film projects discussing the Ezra Miller problems, more rumors surrounding show cancellations and who could be next to lead DC films.  Marvel makes a milestone casting decision.  And they continue the Bandwagon Nerds review of Umbrella Academy Season 3!

  • @WrestlngRealist
  • @AttitudeAgg
  • @itsReyCash
  • @PCTunney
  • @ViolentAesop
  • @therealcplatt
  • @ChairshotMedia

About Bandwagon Nerds

Join Patrick O’Dowd, David Ungar, PC Tunney and Rey Cash as they keep everyone up on all things nerd, and maybe add some new nerds along the way. It’s the Bandwagon Nerds Podcast!

About the Chairshot Radio Network

Created in 2017, the Chairshot Radio Network presents you with the best in wrestling and wrestling crossover podcasts, including POD is WAR, Women’s Wrestling Talk, The #Miranda Show, Badlands’ Wrestling Mount Rushmores, The Outsider’s Edge, DWI Podcast, Bandwagon Nerds, the Greg DeMarco Show, 3 Man Weave, Five Rounds, Turnbuckle Talk, Suwama’s Station, The Reaction and more! You can find these great shows each week at theChairshot.com and through our distribution partners, including podcasting’s most popular platforms.


The Chairshot Radio Network
Your home for the hardest hitting podcasts and radio shows!

All Shows On Demand

Listen on your favorite platform!

iTunes  |  iHeart Radio  |  Google Play  |  Spotify
Listen, like, subscribe, and share!


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