PROG-METAL’S NEW YOUNG GIANTS: BTBAM AT NYC’s BLENDER THEATER ON HALLOF*CKINWEEN 2007
Cripples shouldn’t get so drunk before they leave the house. But despite my lack of gravity-confidence, I wasn’t missing this fucking show. After hearing about half of Between The Buried And Me‘s riconkulous new album, Colors, I knew I had to take the opportunity to see the live show – broken shoulder/Halloween or not; who gives a fuck? Get wasted and go…see…METAL.
So last Wednesday (All Hallow’s Eve), this guy imbibed a half bottle of whiskey and headed out to brave the not-so-creepiness. I’m sure in many crevices of the city evil-doers and maniacal mischief-makers must have been tearing it loose, but thankfully I avoided too much nonsense and rolled up to the venue about 10 minutes before BTBAM was to go on.
In between bands, I sadly watched the aftermath of another fallen soldier as some poor dude was rushed to a downstairs couch to nurse what he would soon find out was a broken ankle…wack!@!%$ Later reports confirmed that despite his injury, that brave young man stuck around to check out the BTBAM madness, which I’m sure he was…ouch…happy about. Thank god for whiskey!
In working towards piecing together the hazy details of the night, one thing was absolutely for sure – BTBAM is a band that is furiously in control of both their instruments and their mammoth-sized concepts. These guys love the music of Opeth (and video games), and it shows in their melodic agressive/progressive sound, which does not shy away from either blast beats or soft vocal harmonies. They even go so far as to sporadically incorporate a few other varying (and totally unexpected) genres, such as swing, waltz, and country ho-down, and somehow it works pretty damn well. The random bursts of genre-switching are layered in so tightly, and they transition into the following (often brutal) parts with such ease, that it’s almost impossible to call out such kooky konceptual ideaz. The songs are just plain awesome.
When BTBAM go on the road again next Spring with Dream Theater, Opeth, and 3, get there early to see these burgeoning pioneers of the new new metal sound. Colors is truly the most adventurous metal album of the year, and perhaps the best as well. Aside from the Dethalbum, of course.