Every band has their fair share of tribulations and set backs throughout their career, and Southampton’s Bury Tomorrow are no different. Indeed, there was a time between their 2009 debut ‘Portraits’ and their 2012 follow-up ‘The Union Of Crowns’ where the band nearly called it quits altogether.
Yet, here we are in 2018; the band have been slogging it for over ten years now, and though their ascension through the metalcore ranks has definitely seen a considerable climb, the quintet are yet to reap in the same benefits as contemporaries such as Architects, Bring Me The Horizon, Memphis May Fire, or Parkway Drive. It was the band’s last output, ‘Earthbound’, that finally clobbered people into paying some deserved attention.
With all eyes on the next step that they tread, fifth album ‘Black Flame’ is undoubtedly a culmination of everything that Bury Tomorrow are refined into its most initimidating and completed form yet.
Riffs from axe-wielding duo Kristan Dawson and Jason Cameron crash around us and sink the ground around us into the record just a mere few seconds into opener ‘No Less Violent’ whilst Dani Winter-Bates screams stranglehold us into place, and Cameron‘s soothing cleans in the chorus hold us tight whilst we have a few moments to breathe.
From here on out, Bury Tomorrow keep coming at us again and again for the just over 40-minute long running time of the record with nothing but their A game in hand, sticking to their guns from the first second to the very last.
Second single ‘Knife Of Gold’ is an assault that easily takes the crown as the band’s heaviest recorded song to date, with Dani channelling screams so piercingly demonic that he could even give Dani Filth a run for his money.
More than any of their previous offerings, ‘Black Flame’ feels and transitions like an album, and a project that is intended to be listened to from start-to-finish as opposed to a cut and shunt for bangers LP. Honestly, they’ve upped production values tenfold here.
A subtle yet slick presence of electronics grasps our hands and leads us from one track into the next like a journey. There’s one of said bridges at the end of the record’s title-track which has been omitted from its single form, and seamlessly plunges us into ‘My Revenge’, which comes bearing riffs that even Killswitch Engage would be seething to have crafted, all pile-drived through with the rhythmic brunt of bassist Davyd Winter-Bates and drummer Adam Jackson.
The record’s magnum opus lies in ‘More Than Mortal’. Dani runs at us with a seething and rabid vocal attack as the band rapidly pushes us into the track’s cataclysmic breakdown; one that’s going to make you want to throw a building right through another building, all before Dawson throws in an insatiable solo.
Where ‘Earthbound’ saw Bury Tomorrow treading along the line barely separating them from metalcore’s finest, ‘Black Flame’ shoves them right into the thick of and shoulder-to-shoulder with the genre’s elite.