Sound — 10
First of all, I would like to say that this was my first BTBAM album. I saw the video for "Alaska" on the Victory Records VictorV episode that came with my copy of Atreyu "The Curse". Afterwards, I was impressed and wanted to get the album "Alaska", but they were out at my local F.Y.E so I got "Colors" instead. What I hear is a lot of Dream Theater, Opeth, and Pink Floyd in their music. The guitars are really good, the bass is amazing, the drums rock, and the vocals are an interesting blend between death metal growls and screams and atmospheric, ambient clean sequences. BTW, "Viridian" is such an awesome buildup to "White Wall"! Jamie King did a great job in production and the sound of the album is awesome. You can hear each individual instrument and each individual riff and run. "Informal Gluttony's" Middle-Eastern drum inspired intro just proves that BTBAM doesn't care about the boundaries set by the major labels and big corporations and just does what they want!
Lyrics — 10
The lyrics pretty much require you to read them to fully understand what he's saying. Here's what I think the songs mean. 01. "Foam Born A (The Backtrack)":This song is about being born and coming into existence and being old and reflecting on your life.("I'll just keep waiting. We'll all just keep waiting. In the cold. The supplement. We lost some friends, we drove the bends so small.") 02. "B (The Decade of Statues)": this song is about writer's block and the songwriter's difficulty in writing songs and appreciating fans and receiving fan mail. ("It's been a while since we've written each other and hopefully this will comfort you") 03. "Informal Gluttony": this song is about corporate buisnessmen whose lives revolve around their work hours ("clock tower, bring us all down") and don't think for themselves. Instead, just keep living their lifestyle and make sure they get their career advances. They live like mice or rats being manipulated by the big corporate bosses. ("corner office tubes, give me the best view in the hut.") 04. "Sun of Nothing":This song is about a man who can't stand life on Earth anymore and feels lonely so he's going to build a spaceship and float himself towards the sun and die. But while in transit he realizes he never really was lonely, it's really his fault for thinking he's better than eveyone. 05. "Ants of the Sky":This song was written while he was in an airport terminal waiting for his flight and he noticed how we are like ants running about to our various destinations, with blank expressions, unfeeling. ("the walking dead") 06. "Prequel to the Sequel":This song is about Mother Nature giving birth to Earth, and how Earth's three lovers ("the headless lover of three an unspeakable affair") took advantage of him and he withered away and died ("torn to his last life, how hadn't it noticed a constant change in the surroundings it didn't think anything could go this wrong") Basically, he's trying to say if we're not careful, Earth may be destroyed. 07. "Viridian": This song is an instrumental, however I heard that the story behind it was that he was shopping for paint colors and discovered the color Viridian, basically a fancy way of saying indigo. I love this song, it's the eye of the hurricane in this album. It builds the up until the most ferocious storm surge hits you, a vicious aural assault, the best song on the album. White Wall. 08. "White Wall": This song is about how musicians are image-based, how music isn't important to the industry anymore ("the whores take the stage, flash our skills") then goes on to say that his band, Between the Buried and Me, are redefining themselves, the canvas is blank. This is all they have, so they want to be remembered for it. ("this is all we have when we die, this is what's left of us when we die. We will be remembered for this... White Wall") This song is my favorite song they've ever written, an incredible compositon. The singer is very, very talented. The first time I heard this album, I was transfixed until the last piano chord was hit (I love how this album begins and ends with piano. Beautiful.)
Overall Impression — 10
The only bands I can put them close to are Rush, Exotic Animal Petting Zoo, and Dream Theater. The guitarists are gods in their own right. The 4 minute long solo to "White Wall" is phenomenal, especially the tap sweeps performed about halfway through. I love everything about this album, to me BTBAM and Unearth are the best metalcore bands out there, the most skilled. If this album were stolen, thank god it's on my computer! I'll probably buy Alaska to replace it.