It has been a seemingly familiar story in the lore of Bury Your Dead. Band releases record, band tours on record, band decides to go their separate ways. Bury Your Dead ultimately would come back around to have Mat Bruso front the band as they recorded what would in the eyes of many be the group’s best cuts in the form of Cover Your Tracks. Seven years later, the band is at nearly the same impasse – though this time the circumstances are rather different. Following the departure of Myke Terry, the man fronting the band for their past two records, Bruso was called upon again to join the band four years after leaving to pursue a teaching career. What results is a near-return to roots for the band, as Mosh ‘N Roll not only harkens a song back from the band’s original full-length, but brings back memories of a time when the band was at the top of their game musically. While Mosh ‘N Roll isn’t note for note what old-school fans were hoping for with this record, Bury Your Dead certainly sounds better than they have since Bruso departed. Mosh ‘N Roll ends up being a solid hardcore album that maintains the spirit of the band, even if it isn’t as strong as some of the work they’ve done in the past.
At heart, Mosh ‘N Roll is a hardcore record, but the tones and grooves here root themselves in hardcore, metalcore and nu-metal. Opener “Slaughterhouse-Five” grooves on a roundabout of bouncing, yet heavy guitars while Bruso leads the charge. While not as pinpoint as it could be, the sludgy tones on the guitars help make this track catchy from the get-go. “Nothing is Lost Save Honor” follows with a similar purpose, as the injection of lead licks helps keep this from falling into complete oblivion – although their history of keeping things a bit melodic has fared better. Where the band has always succeeded is in the more is less philosophy, and sometimes Mosh ‘N Roll just doesn’t sound as precise and purposeful as this band, or other bands in that manner, have in the past. Sometimes the band seems right on target (“Slaughterhouse-Five”, “Mother Night”) while other times we get lost in the buildup and execution of things (“Timequake”), reminding us that the same bag of tricks will not have the same effect they’ve always had.
Those hoping for trademark mosh moments won’t be disappointed though. “The Sirens of Titan” leads off with a monsterous pit-inducing beat guides us through the dissonant background guitars like a ship in a tumultuous ocean, tossing in the occasional reprise between bouts of the catchy guitar riffs leading the verses. “Slapstick” doesn’t disappoint either, sounding arguably most like the Bury Your Dead of old with plenty of crunch, rhythmic assault and ferocious lyricism. And in pure BYD fashion, the band brings back the name-chanting anthem that fans love in a completely re-recorded fashion with “Mosh ‘N Roll”. Sure, it is essentially the same track, but the venom and hype creation of the original is nearly lost in the slick guitars and overdone gang vocals to make this a dud of an ending. In a similar fashion, Bruso’s return is as if he never left, with his voice pretty much intact and his “tough guy” lyricism still as fiery as ever.
Not a complete failure or success, Mosh ‘N Roll certainly re-ignites the fire Bury Your Dead once had. Those hoping for a return to olden days are certain to find something to like about this, as Bruso and company channel enough of their past to keep their old sound intact while adding a bit of modern flavor to the proceedings.
2. Nothing is Lost Save Honor
4. The Sirens of Titan
5. Deadeye Dick
7. Sun Moon Star
9. Mother Night
11. Mosh 'N Roll
Bury Your Dead (sometimes abbreviated to BYD) are a five-piece metallic hardcore band that hails from Worcester, Massachusetts, United States.... read more