I’ve been a fan of Biffy Clyro for many a year now. So many in fact, that I remember the days when they were just that weird Scottish band with the video about soapbox racing (My Recovery Injection).
The band have never been shy of pushing the boundaries, producing nearly flawless rock anthems with a dissonant structure. There’s always been a few tracks on each album that haven’t worked for me though, either not memorable enough or the jarring rhyming scheme makes it too difficult to listen to. (This probably isn’t a good reason to avoid something, I normally like a challenge).
This new album ‘Opposites’ is a double album. Supposedly this means the album concept is in two parts? I wasn’t really sure what to expect with that brief, so made a point to avoid any reviews before I gave it a listen. iTunes download completed. Let’s give it a whirl.
Biffy Clyro’s new album ‘Opposites’ is, thankfully, the work of a band perfecting their trademark sound. There’s ballads – ‘Opposite’, is an ode to Simon Neil’s self depreciating tales of love. There’s flashes of the band’s prog-metal roots ‘A Girl And His Cat’
The double album holds together pretty well. There’s a good structure to the songs and despite the range of influences, fast-paced, angsty tracks ‘Stingin’ Belle’ and ‘Little Hospital’ flow smoothly into the band’s softer side, ‘Victory Over The Sun’ starts as a hushed melody, building into full-on punchy rock.
That said, the Mariachi band on ‘Spanish Radio’ creates a strange, almost calypso feel that jars heavily with the rest of the album.
The core theme seems to be the push-pull of a love, with ‘The Thaw’ begging ‘please believe in me, like I believe in you‘, ‘The Jokes On Us’ calls out ‘I’m in love with someone else‘. There’s hope in the end though, with ‘Picture A Knife Fight’s firm resolution ‘we’ve got to stick together’.
Typically for Biffy Clyro, its a great album. Somewhat stretched in places, but still so uniquely there’s. This is a band who are finally reaching the sound they’ve been building to since their humble beginnings.
‘Opposites’ is out now.
Download: Biblical, Victory Over the Sun, Black Chandelier, Skylight