I feel the need to start this review with a sentence that I don’t like to say: Angelo was right. It’s amazing to me that two years ago, this dude had no interest in metal and now he is recommending albums to me that blow my mind. Proud parent moment… or something like that. But after some debate, I gave a few more in-depth listens to Cannibal, the new album from Bury Tomorrow, that released July of this year via Music For Nations. It’s safe to say this album is one of my favorites so far this year and I’m disappointed it took me so long to give it enough attention.
“Choke” is about as solid of a song a band could open an album with. It reminds me a bit of the darker Parkway Drive stuff from their newest release. It’s a truly heavy song that boasts an intense groove of a riff that runs through. The clean vocals in the chorus are absolutely haunting and the end of the song hits a space that has clean guitar and vocals with almost nothing behind them. For me, this is the highlight of the song, used sparingly but possessing a chilling effect before it bursts into one last fury. After one track, my attention was gained.
The title track, “Cannibal” is highlighted by the opening, spiraling guitar with solo work and harmonics used through the verses to lend a hollow, open feel. The little ditty in the chorus has me hooked every time. Speaking of the chorus, it’s one of the catchiest of the effort. There’s a smooth transition in the bridge where it embarks into a major key change for a few bars before coming back in with the heavy minor key. The transition into the last chorus is fantastic, implementing drawn out notes that create a huge, hollow feel. “The Grey (VIXI)” picks right up where “Cannibal” ends with another catchy chorus, slowing the pace down while still bringing the heavy.
The urgency picks right back up with “Imposter,” and it may be my favorite track on the album. The drums are engaging with fast, frequent fills and double bass pushing the song forward. The guitar solo, though brief, has an epic feel to it. There are a few big-time hooks on the record, but when the last chorus starts in almost a capella, I got chills. “Better Tomorrow” has a big-time feel to it. The screams in the verse feel different, though I can’t put my finger on why. Much like “Imposter” there is a hollow moment of a capella in the last chorus, but this time is quickly matched with a wall of sound.
“The Agonist” is the heaviest song on the album. The bass pushes crushingly low, hollow tones while the guitar takes on a high neck riff that keeps the mutilating feel going. The riff at the end of the song is one of the best I’ve heard in a long time.
“Quake” brings on a change of pace, starting off slow with clean guitar and vocals leading to an absolute explosion into the heavy chorus with deep screams and an ominous feel. “Gods & Machines” piqued my interest from the onset, falling in love with the chord progression in the beginning and the extra clean run. When the distortion hits there’s a technically sound riff that continues into the chorus. Since we are on the topic, this chorus has star power. It’s not the most over-the-top on the album, but has that “it” factor to be a contender as a successful single.
“Voice & Truth” is another uptempo track possessing the same elements that have been successful throughout the album with a half-time chorus that will warrant your attention and high quality solos in the transitions. The bridge slows down to a clean finger-picked riff that builds from nothing to a massive guitar solo. The last run of this solo is easily the best on the album. “Cold Sleep” is absolutely brutal. The riff in the introduction that rolls throughout is catchy and I find myself focusing on that, no matter how great everything else is about the track. One of the strongest choruses of the effort and a heavy breakdown steal the show here.
“Dark, Infinite” is the last stop on this record. From the beginning, I was hooked. The drum fill is attention-grabbing but the scream really gets the party started. The song is uptempo and crushing. The guitar and bass are really busy in the best way and the chorus possesses an extra level of grit, anger and raw emotion. The dueling guitars throughout is mesmerizing, the spoken word breakdown is intense with raw emotion and the explosion of sound that comes back is amazing. The breakdown uses silence to send a message, executed well and closes the album in a unique fashion.
This album is great. Really great. And it definitely deserves a spin!