buried in verona - notorious

Rating: ★★★☆☆

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Released: 13th August, 2012

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While most bands sharpen their knives on the grinder for a while before gaining recognition and success, Aussie bunch, Buried In Verona stabbed their blades into the ribs of hardcore/metalcore from the get-go; leaving the spilled blood on the floor and letting the wound heal itself, the band pulled the ribs apart and settled into the yawning puncture. Watching the flesh raggedly grow back, the band balanced on the rib-bones and waited for the fissure to heal from the inside-out. That was in 2007. They’ve been there ever since.

Before the band had even played their first gig, they’d already recorded their debut album, Circle the Dead, which was quick to reach major Australian retailers. The album was released due to a deal the band had been offered by Riot! Entertainment, upon the band’s formation in 2007. The band’s potential was instantly sniffed up into the nostrils of the industry like a line from a dirty toilet cubicle, mainly because of their undying eagerness and drive to succeed shone through the chalked-up membranes like a plane’s landing lights in deep fog.

After the release of their debut, the band hit the stage and gained a reputation for a hard-hitting, face-sinking, ear-gnarling live show and the local hype grew to national hype, propelling their popularity amongst the water of the scene and due to their increasing popularity and dynamic approach, the band played with Whitechapel amongst others and then, in 2009, after making a sufficient name on the gig circuit, they decided to settle back into the studio and began writing their second album which was released in 2010.

buried in verona

The second album was called Saturday Night Sever – Travolta must have been made a few visits to the opticians after seeing it on the shelves – and it was recorded by Fredrik Nordstrom (producer for Bring Me The Horizon, In Flames, Arch Enemy, Dimmu Borgir, Opeth) who offered the band a recording opportunity after being impressed by their constant strive for improvement and their now uncomfortably tight potential. The band took him up on the offer and flew over to Sweden; the result – Saturday Night Sever.

This album was picked up by Warner Music Australia, which just goes to show the size of the popularity and the hype surrounding the band, and this helped the album reach a wider audience, wider shores and wider opinions. In turn, the success of the album allowed the band to go on a year-long tour and played with the likes of Soilwork, The Haunted, Escape The Fate, We Are The Ocean, Oh, Sleeper and The Devil Wears Prada.

Success and escalating popularity seemed to be never-ending, but we’ve now come to a point where the band is on their third album, Notorious. A fitting name or a premature sign of the band’s impending downfall? We’ll see.

The band has this to say about their music:

We are drawing inspiration from every aspect of music rather than limiting ourselves to a single direction. We want the style to suit the song. We want our music to not only be heard or seen, but felt. Innovation over imitation. We know where we’ve come from, and we know where we want to go. Our music is maturing just like we are.

So, is that statement true? With their third album, does it show the band maturing further? And are they as innovative as they like to think they are?

Miles Away begins with a drifting riff that allows the scattered drumbeat to be carried along, like fallen branches in a country river. The riff quickly dissolves, though, and separates into the estuary of the track with Brett Anderson’s vocals purging through. The guitars swirl away behind his anguished vocals, pulling memories of burning sunsets and icy-blue moons swallowed up by waxy black nights while you sit alone, haemorrhaging the passing hours together. When the breakdown smashes in, those morose memories are forgotten and the sunset transforms into a blaring ball of heat and the moon is no longer cold, but is instead a companion to wash down the night. The lyrics of I’ll never walk away / I’ll never walk away from you will ring in your head longer than a 6 a.m.hangover.

Couldn’t Give 34 Fucks has a downtempo riff which is soon joined by precise, immediate drumming. The deepness of the riffs reverberate around the track like a whale’s last death-cry in the depths of the ocean and the context of the lyrics, which is assumedly about partying and living your life without limitations, really connects with the listener as the vocals are spat out in such a manner that it’s hard not to nod your head along or even find yourself murmuring the lyrics as the album plays out in your car when you’re stuck in a 5 p.m. traffic jam.

Finder Keepers starts with a staccato, muffled riff that blows up into a monstrous, teeth-bared creature that opens up a sea of black in your mind (and in the pit). The riff pares away and allows for the clean vocals to appear, which add accessibility and melody. The breakdown we hear on this track is possibly the hardest, and heaviest, on offer. It rumbles and pressurises together for a tight, intense listen which is the musical equivalent of having your legs caught under a tank. Definitely a favourite for the BIV fans who prefer their riffs blackened and nasty.

The last track, Ivory, is the most laid-back track on offer. Yeah, the harsh vocals can be heard but the overall effect of the track is one of walking across a beach, your footprints getting sunk into the early-morning wet sand, as the cold breeze shifts your hair around your head like a halo of existence. It’s drawn-out. It’s relaxing. And, it’s easy to lose yourself into. But you can pull yourself out of the mirage anytime you want, with the help of the constantly fluctuating guitar.

Buried In Verona may not be as innovative as they hoped with this album, but it’s still a solid release. There are so many bands out there that sound alike in the metalcore/hardcore genres that to get noticed at first takes some doing, but to manage to keep being successful really does show the strength  and pedigree of the band and the dedication to their sound.

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This article was first posted on August 13, 2012