Bullet For My Valentine will always hold a sweet spot in my heart. Arguably, they were my first metal band. They had the songs I continually tried to play on Rock Band but could never quite master. And, most importantly, their records were always filled with tunes worthy of any metal junkie’s attention.
Even when the band released Temper Temper, I refused to part with them. Personally, I liked Temper Temper, in part because the band experimented a little. Now, with Gravity the old Bullet For My Valentine is back in a few ways. They’ve changed up their style and cleaned up their sound a little. Sadly, they eliminated guitar solos, but they added deep groovy rhythms to the mix. However, they are pushing the envelope and seeking to find a sweet spot on the edge of the genre.
No matter how you slice it, Gravity is a very different record for Bullet For My Valentine. The band took a huge leap of faith with the whole album. Unlike Temper Temper, this difference works wonderfully. Rather than employing dazzling guitar solos and riffs, the band opted for moody grooves. The band traded top-notch drum fills and an over-the-top sound for lyric-centered songs. Overall, this change is well done and exciting.
In my iTunes library Gravity earned four stars. While I abhor rating albums with some sort of number system, I feel this is worth mentioning. Metal fans will probably find this album boring. Long time Bullet fans will rank it somewhere near Temper Temper. However, being both of these, I like the album.
I like when band’s try something new. Its refreshing to see an artist embrace a new style or try to tackle something they’ve never touched before. Its inspiring. Sometimes, the products are just as good as the material that made the artist famous. While, I wouldn’t rank Gravity above The Poison, I think it’s a good album. Moreover, I applaud the band for going out on a limb and trying something different.
Recommendations for Investigation
I don’t think Bullet For My Valentine could entirely shake their metal roots. The fact they included the single “Don’t Need You” is proof. To me, “Letting You Go” bridges a few gaps. There are screaming vocals, crunching guitars and pop elements. I enjoy when bands mash together different genres. The results can be fantastic, and on the other hand they can be abysmal. This tune is definitely the first.
The first slower song, “The Very Last Time” is a huge departure for the band. Its riddled with electronic elements and is one of the most radio friendly songs the band has ever created. It could even be construed as a pop song. On the surface this sounds terrible, especially for hardcore fans of the band. But, the song is laced with Matt Tuck’s high quality, and trademarked melancholy.