On a warm summer’s evening back in June this year, yours truly witnessed an Every Time I Die play a borderline chaotic show at The Dome in Tufnell Park, London. Whilst still scarred to this very day from the amount of stage dives and pit action that went down on that fateful night, there was also another lasting memory from that show that speculated the musical direction of their (as of that time) yet unreleased album. A new song was debuted that night called ‘It Remembers’, which showcased a slower, groovier, and melodic form of dirty rock and roll from Buffalo’s most notorious sons. Was this a sign that ETID were slowing down, and stepping down a gear? The simple answer is… No. Absolutely, ruddy not!
The musical progression of Every Time I Die over the past few years has been an interesting journey. Whilst they have not necessarily strayed away from their balls out hardcore punk rock and roll roots, they have leaned towards different influences with each album. Be it the southern rock meets hardcore punk groove of The Big Dirty, or the hyper speed breakneck – almost blast beat ferocity of From Parts Unknown, their latest album Low Teens is probably the most hungry, undeniably raw, and scathing they have sounded in years.
The predominant percentage of this album is just pure fury. Songs such as ‘Glitches’, C++ (Love Will Get You Killed)’, and ‘I Didn’t Want To join Your Stupid Cult Anyway’, are just classic examples of why we fell in love with Every Time I Die in the first place – broken bones and bloodied teeth inducing rock and roll that is acceptable to incite bar fights to. Then you have some slower more melodic numbers on here such as the aforementioned ‘It Remembers’, the crushing opener ‘Fears and Trembling’, and ‘Two Summers’, which gives a chance for vocalist Keith Buckley to showcase his vocal diversity and once again prove why he is one of the best at what he does in this area of music. To be able to swing from primal screams to sublime melody like Buckley does, takes one hell of a singer to be able to do so – note, singer – not a vocalist.
The production on this album is absolutely pivotal and complimentary to ETID’s sound as well. Producer Will Putney (who has done production work for the likes of Bury Tomorrow, Body Count, and Poison The Well), has really brought out a faithful quality in their music which only just heightens that sense of audible danger to the listener. He has captured ETID in the best possible way.
However all these positive notes said, it does not meant his album is perfect by any means. There are a couple of songs (‘Religion Of Speed’, and ‘Map Change’) which feel just that little bit underwhelming. With all this being said, listening to the album as a whole could also seem a little samey to the average listener due to lack of musical diversity. But if you are already aware of Every Time I Die’s illustrious musical back catalogue, then you will know that you will ever be disappointed by what you are going to get from them in future released – particularly with Low Teens.
Ultimately, Every Time I Die have crafted yet another blistering, raucous piece of rock and roll alchemy which once again proves just why they are one of the most reliable and respected groups in the game today. Low Teens on a personal note, is probably the best release they have given since The Big Dirty – big, bold, and purely, utterly filthy. But if you ever doubted that Every Time I Die would disappoint with Low Teens, then go and hang your head in shame. Bloody superb!