Bullet For My Valentine - Temper Temper review


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Band: Bullet For My Valentine
Album: Temper Temper
Release date: February 2013

01. Breaking Point
02. Truth Hurts
03. Temper Temper
04. P.O.W.
05. Dirty Little Secret
06. Leech
07. Dead To The World
08. Riot
09. Saints & Sinners
10. Tears Don't Fall (Part 2)
11. Livin' Life (On the Edge of a Knife)
12. Not Invincible [Deluxe edition bonus]
13. Whole Lotta Rosie [live] [AC/DC cover] [Deluxe edition bonus]
14. Scream Aim Fire [live] [Deluxe edition bonus]

Am I looking for an easy target to just mock and laugh at, I hear you ask? Well, it's not my intention, but sometimes an album is an easy target for a reason and boy, does Temper, Temper hold up one big bullseye for people to aim at. Regarded as the moment the bubble burst for Bullet For My Valentine, the album pinpoints the moment where the band's rapid upward trajectory become a downward spiral they have yet to pull out of.

The album is a great example of where bands miss the point of Metallica's Black Album, when they say the next record is supposed to be their version of (which the band prominently forewarned of in interviews around the time). Believing that the Black Album is synonymous with being nothing more than a watering down of aggression and a more radio-friendly sound in its place, it often serves as a warning light that the band in question is ready to shed its sound and go for broke. Each track here is a pale imitation of what the band did before. Don't believe me? "Dirty Little Secret" is "Your Betrayal" pt2 while "Tears Don't Fall (part 2)" is "Tears Don't Fall"...pt2.

The band seem to take the idea of a cleaner radio-friendly sound to mean the castration of all power in the music, because that is what they did here. "Riot" is about as convincing a call to arms as Droopy the dog calling for insurrection; the album seems overly cautious, lest it somehow offend anyone by being too loud. The title track is the clearest example of this. The chorus sounds ready to jump out at you, but it just carries on as before; rather than a powerful climax it just seems like an extension of the build up, yet you know it is supposedly the blow off point. The guitars seem bereft of much power, their rough edges having been filed down and the resulting blunt edges merely grazing your skin. The drums don't so much smash the doors down as knock gently and ask to come in.

Temper, Temper is not without its merits, however; while the band aren't playing much in the way of anything mind blowing, it is well played. You get the feeling that the band could pull off this change in style had they planned it correctly. "Dirty Little Secret" isn't bad, but then again they have done it better before. "Saints And Sinners" and "Livin' Life On The Edge Of A Knife" are pretty decent, though shouldn't be considered among the band's best tracks.

Aim for the stars and you'll hit the moon the saying goes; it's a shame, as that would have been a softer landing than Temper, Temper got. The best thing this album has going for it, is that it can be used as an example of what not to do when you attempt your own version of the Black Album.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 7
Songwriting: 5
Originality: 5
Production: 5

Written by omne metallum | 21.05.2020


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.

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