Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Review: Blessed By a Broken Heart - Feel the Power

 For what little people actually took the time to check the group out, the basic effect that Montreal quintet Blessed By a Broken Heart had was that they pretty much failed to impress and succeeded to annoy all those who listened to them when they started out. This is pretty understandable. Their mixture of weak metalcore breakdowns and dated sounding pop rock techniques left little of a lasting impression and they made themselves look like idiots in the process of making this music. This statement would be much more credible if I didn't enjoy Escape the Fate, Falling In Reverse and Black Veil Brides (Sorry people who lurk across comment boards throughout the internet.) but at least they managed to really have fun with their music and play with some strength. Blessed By a Broken Heart are just so, perfectly lame in their musical delivery and lyrical message and third album Feel the Power proves this without any great difficulty.

 So the general style of BBABH is a style that I do enjoy, but BBABH is not the band to hear it being executed well. The general reason for this is the same reason why Dragonforce will never gain any respect from true power metal enthusiasts. Their sound is ultimately too refined. When hearing Sam Ryder and Shred Sean creating breakdowns on Deathwish, it is a very light display of guitar  playing tat carries none of the depth that a good breakdown should offer. Even the album's best song Love Nightmare has the qualities of a watered down version of Atreyu's Bleeding Mascara.
 With the exception of that, Feel the Power is simply a minefield of cock-rock clichés that were wiped out after Nirvana got big. Throughout the albums tracks like Deathwish and Forever mix these weak thrash riffs and lead guitar shredding with the kind of thumping synth backdrops that I'd only enjoy hearing on a Children of Bodom album, while the attempts of making power metal on Shut Up and Rock and Holdin' Back for Nothin' with rapid riffs and packing the songs with bloated synthesizers and gang vocals which sound like they're being whispered make these songs sound like the most crafted-for-children metal songs I've ever heard since hearing some of the songs from The Thunderlords' Noisy Songs for Noisy Kids. (an album that features such classics as I Like Dirt and Old Man Olaf, which is basically a metal rendition of Old MacDonald's Farm. God, I'd rather be listening to that.)
 But when they're not trying to be Def Leppard with breakdowns, or in the case of worst song of 2012 so far, Rockin' All Night, just be Def Leppard full stop, BBABH try some other musical ventures such as the "charming" ballad I've Got You, which is extremely bland and soulless and sounds like it was written by Stock Aitken Waterman or... whoever writes songs for Westlife. Sometimes the group try and up their metallic credentials and at various points of Scream It Like You Mean It, they sound like they're trying to be Bury Your Dead. But they are seriously not Bury Your Dead and the subsequent onslaught of synth drums proves this.
 So, this album is a letdown in every sense. I have managed to enjoy various bands who have taken glam rock and done something more extreme with it over the past few years, but BBABH are not a band who have the capabilities to be extreme in any sense. If you want something like this, then I would to look to the three bands mentioned in the intro Escape the Fate, Falling In Reverse and Black Veil Brides or even look to the more tongue-in-cheek Steel Panther or of course just listen to more Def Leppard and Mötley Crüe. There is no real point in having Blessed By a Broken around. Their music is dated and irrelevant, there's little maturity in their music but there's also little fun to be had either. Basically this band have once again proved themselves to be as annoying and unnecessary as ever.

Blessed By a Broken Heart's Feel the Power is out now via Tooth & Nail Records. 

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