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Bullet for My Valentine, As I Lay Dying - A New Generation
Bullet for My Valentine is a band which is very popular with a large group of young people and they are getting bigger and bigger. They proved it by selling out De Melkweg at the 11th of November days before the concert; tickets were sold for more than twice the price on the internet! I was there too to see whether they are worth all the commotion.
Protest the Hero was the opening act for tonight and they replaced Bleeding Through. Off course I missed them, but I was told that wasn’t too bad because these young guys couldn’t bring their chaotic music tight enough.
When I arrived As I Lay Dying was already like 15 minutes into their set, so I rushed to the front through all the kids. The venue was packed and steamy and the crowd responded very well. On the encouragement of the frontman people were stage diving; well, at least trying to do so: it was hilarious to see that the audience simply dropped almost everyone! The dramatic sound of As I Lay Dying which I like so much wasn’t too present at their live performance. Especially the vocals on the songs of the latest album contained too little emotion and the riffs sounded too standard metalcore melodic to me. I refer to a song like ‘The Darkest Nights’, which was actually one the most popular songs, but I find the chorus sound too emo for As I Lay Dying and it’s too bad that they take in such popular influences, because it breaks down their sincerity. Fortunately we also got to hear old songs like the one of which I believe they always use as a finisher: ‘Forever’. A guy even jumped into the crowd from a high speaker and this time the audience díd catch him; As I Lay Dying could really appreciate this enthusiastic participation of the crowd and all in all they gave a very entertaining show.
It was the third time that Bullet for My Valentine performed in the Netherlands this year and again they opened with the known intro followed by ‘Her Voice Rests Inside’. Kids were from the first to the very last second enthusiastically singing along and moshing it up. In the middle of the set an acoustic guitar was taken on stage to play the intro of ‘All These Things I Hate’, which was definitely the audience’s favorite song. I personally don’t like those direct soft lyrics which make you go like; oh yeah, that kind of shit again, but it didn’t seem to bother the audience. As a surprise a cover of Metallica was played which remarkably wasn’t ‘Sanitarium’, which they covered this year on a Master of Puppets tribute album; instead ‘Creeping Death’ from Ride the Lightning was played. It was fun to see, but the voice of Matthew just doesn’t fit with the thrashy garage sound of that song, but I appreciate that they let the younger fans hear some metal history. Earlier this year drummer Michael Thomas said in an interview with me that Bullet for My Valentine is a straight metal band, but because of all the emo-like clean vocals I wouldn’t agree with him. Because of their accessible sound I see bands like them as a follow up of the nu-metal genre; they get kids into metal and so they get to hear more metal. It’s understandable that you wouldn’t like Bullet for My Valentine as a metalhead; but hey, if you see it like this there’s nothing wrong with it!