Scream Aim Fire review by Bullet for My Valentine

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  • Released: Jan 25, 2008
  • Sound: 7
  • Lyrics: 7
  • Overall Impression: 7
  • Reviewer's score: 7 Good
  • Users' score: 8.7 (462 votes)
Bullet for My Valentine: Scream Aim Fire
17

Sound — 7
After earning Kerrang's Best British Newcomer in 2005 and impressing audiences with their Maiden-influenced body of work, Bullet For My Valentine has returned with it's latest collection of riff-heavy metal tracks, Scream Aim Fire. Vocalist/guitarist Matthew Tuck mentioned in a Revolver interview that the new record would be a lot more up tempo, a lot more aggressive, which actually isn't necessarily true when you hear the finished product. It's not to say that Scream Aim Fire takes a step backward in the aggression department, but it certainly won't shock any fans either. When it comes down to it, 2 of the best tracks could easily be described as ballads more than anything.

For fans of the dual guitar magic between Tuck and Michael Paget, don't worry. Each song features beautifully executed riffs and there are solos galore. The opening title track Scream Aim Fire is solid example, with everything from a driving intro to some killer pinch harmonics midway through. It does get a bit repetitive, however, and that seems to be a theme for the record. For as many comparisons people make to Metallica, Hetfield and the boys usually had a way of taking the songs into new, interesting directions. You don't need to do that with every song, but BFMV needed to add a little more variety into the some of the tracks.

The most aggressive tracks aren't what make the biggest impression on Scream Aim Fire. Say Goodnight could easily be the best tune on the album, with a clean, stripped-down intro and unaffected vocals delivered by Tuck. It's not an acoustic track by any means and does feature guitar solos (not to mention screams at one point), Say Goodnight has a gorgeous melody that comes through immediately. By the end of the song the band does revert to their screaming metal side, which was actually completely unnecessary. While it might satisfy the fans that get antsy whenever the tempo slows down, Say Goodnight is at it's strongest when it does get a little sentimental.

Scream Aim Fire is a good album, but it really doesn't approach the memorable quality of the tracks on The Poison. The song that does stand out as being a suitable successor to Tears Don't Fall would be Waking The Demon. It has by far the best intro riff on the entire album and definitely lives up to the aggression that Tuck intended to create.

Lyrics — 7
The themes on Scream Aim Fire are often too familiar and don't break a lot of new ground. In the title track Tuck sings, Kill your enemies; My brothers dead around me wounds are hurting; Death is creeping for me; Smoke is lighting, hearts are pounding. In Eye Of The Storm and a few others there are similar themes of destruction, which would be cool if the band was able to put a new twist on it all. BFMV's lyrics aren't bad, but there are times they could have tried to inject a little something new into topics like death or pain.

Overall Impression — 7
While the guitar skills of Tuck and Paget are as impressive as ever, the songwriting doesn't seem quite as original as it did on The Poison. The band shouldn't be afraid of taking a risk by doing acoustics, ballads, or mellower tracks like Say Goodnight or Forever And Always because they are unexpectedly some of the best tracks on Scream Aim Fire. That may be ruining the whole brutal metal legacy they're going for, but even bands like Metallica, Megadeth, and even Pantera have embraced their softer side at one point or another.

151 comments sorted by best / new / date

    wertaw
    hes gunna buy 2 copies coz hes gunna cum all over the first one by the sounds of it
    metal_maniac#1
    Im seriously fu-king sick of people saying that just because a vocalist doesnt use full on screams or growls in metal, that they are using a james hetfield sound, fu-k that.... off the rant, i liked the album, love the fact that it's different, and some people can't handle it, haha.
    fluffylump2
    writing lame, mundane material is not progression just because the previous album was a mushy heartbreak metalcore shitfest. this band is a disgrace and they are not metal. they write songs that Trivium wrote last year and give them new names. this band will never be heavy, original, or even vaguely interesting. it is a shame that every hard rock publication is going coocoo for cocoa puffs over a band that spends more time straightening their hair and shopping for belts than writing quality metal music. damn them. damn them all.
    Golem29
    fluffylump2 wrote: writing lame, mundane material is not progression just because the previous album was a mushy heartbreak metalcore shitfest. this band is a disgrace and they are not metal. they write songs that Trivium wrote last year and give them new names. this band will never be heavy, original, or even vaguely interesting. it is a shame that every hard rock publication is going coocoo for cocoa puffs over a band that spends more time straightening their hair and shopping for belts than writing quality metal music. damn them. damn them all.
    You win this review
    Shread_6009
    tahnk god some bands try to make their music without screaming; i like scream vocals but more bands shold try to evolve their sounds rather than stick with what was originnally popular. more usical singing and better riffs are fine with me
    Vicious00009
    NEWSFLASH! Metalcore is NOT Metal. Its manufactured metal for scene kisd who think they are rebellious.
    DamageMachine
    There heaviest influences are iron maiden and metallica, honestly, (like trivium) I saw it coming. I commend them for making this album, it gives a nice touch of alot of old bands that were in their glory days. In my opinion though in, "Scream, Aim, Fire" When he says "Right now its killing time"
    DamageMachine
    DamageMachine wrote: There heaviest influences are iron maiden and metallica, honestly, (like trivium) I saw it coming. I commend them for making this album, it gives a nice touch of alot of old bands that were in their glory days. In my opinion though in, "Scream, Aim, Fire" When he says "Right now its killing time"
    Especially when he says the word "time" Eye of the Storm I here shreds of tallica-esque lyrical styles and guitar styles, and I can just here loads of Iron Maiden-Esque inspired guitar work all over this album which is not a bad thing. But hey if your listen to your favourite bands enough you tend to right stuff like them and use the same techniques that they used, and in the end, dont we just wanna be like our heroes? I know I would But hey, this is just one guys opinion on the matter.
    danielrobbyshor
    i knew this album would be a letdown. the poison got old really quickly. this kinda stuff just doesn't have the replay value.
    roarinflames
    SoASinger wrote: roarinflames wrote: and another thing. maybe thats why metalheads hate rap and emo(pop-punk). because most of their listeners change their look to fit in. what do metalheads do? we buy band shirts. i literally have over 50 band shirts. surprisingly, i only wear one every 3 or 4 days. so is that really an appearance change or is it a form of collection. Man who cares about what the look like or whats "metal" to wear. Trust me where i live I'll be the only person at a metal show wearing a Pro Club or my NWA shirt saggin my pants and still getting in the pit. So appearance doesnt really have anything to do with it.
    yeah dude i just said that we shouldn't care what we look like based on our musical preference. BTW i just got this album. its pretty good, considering i hate their old material. however, the two songs mentioned in the review ("Say goodnight" and "Forever and always"), are extremely pop junk. they are actually the most boring songs on the album. overall, 7 out of 11 of the songs are pretty good
    shallowbay29006
    i havent heard the cd yet, but i think it would be pretty good concidering how good they did on their last album
    GenderConfusedJ
    xAbyssusx wrote: " Over The Top Over The Top! Right Now Its Killing Time! Over The Top Over The Top! "
    Anyone see the Disposable Heroes Reference? Musically it has its good points, some pretty nice riffs, vocals different, but not Hetfield sounding. None of it caught on as much as Tears Dont Fall or anything off that album for that matter, reminds me more of the EP really in terms of general sound and style musically.
    jonnieb123
    not every metal singer who doesnt scream is trying to be metallica or trivium!
    boreamor
    I love this album. They are more melodic and seriously, it's nice hearing a riff in a Major Key (Hearts Burst Into Fire.) And the guitar work is more harmonized and it sounds amazing. No this is not the normal Bullet, this is the new bullet. A7x changed musically. It's called progression. They've kept the main elements, but they're still amazing.
    tbarrettl
    boreamor wrote: I love this album. They are more melodic and seriously, it's nice hearing a riff in a Major Key (Hearts Burst Into Fire.) And the guitar work is more harmonized and it sounds amazing. No this is not the normal Bullet, this is the new bullet. A7x changed musically. It's called progression. They've kept the main elements, but they're still amazing.
    Though so far Bullet hasn't done any Cheesy Tim Burton wannabe songs and videos, they just have stayed true to the Classics as they said they would and certainly have adopted a sound like Iron Maiden, GnR, and Metallica.
    nick_b
    jonnieb123 wrote: not every metal singer who doesnt scream is trying to be metallica or trivium!
    finally someone else who realises this
    The Eyebrow
    rebofthetemple wrote: It's too repetitve in my opinion. The vocals would not have bothered me if he has found his own style instead of trying to do a Trivium impression.
    i liked the album, but i agree - while listening to Scream Aim Fire, i thought it could be something from The Crusade.
    gldragon
    Brendan DEwald wrote: you guys that complain about no screaming in the album u need to understand alot of bands have basically stopped screaming because of damage to the voice box . These bands include , atreyu, a7x even shadows fall dont scream that much . I think the album in is a gud album even though there is no screaming, the music writing has improved and the guitar solos are better than the first one, so in my opinion they have matured musically and have improved. Just my opinion.
    first of all you need to get your info straight...the singer for a7x, m. shadows, did not stop screaming b/c of damage to his vocal chords, they choose not to scream b/c that is a decision that they made, as a matter of fact he screams better than he used to...source: A7X All Access DVD...im not sure about atreyu but other than your faulty info i agree with you on their decision not to scream...i personally havent heard the new album (plan on it) but i did enjoy The Poison
    roarinflames
    and another thing. maybe thats why metalheads hate rap and emo(pop-punk). because most of their listeners change their look to fit in. what do metalheads do? we buy band shirts. i literally have over 50 band shirts. surprisingly, i only wear one every 3 or 4 days. so is that really an appearance change or is it a form of collection.
    Professor Fate
    Good Album, different direction then The Poison, but i agree the mellower songs are better and fit better with the music. good job bullet for valentine!
    RJMan
    funny how metal repeats itself in everything, not to rag on the genre or anything, I love everything from eighties metal to bullet, but i find it funny how all the people who love eighties metal hate kids with emo haircuts and skinny jeans. They base thier opinion of a band on what type of fans they have, and i think that makes you so much more of a poser than just liking music based on whether you LIKE IT!!!. Do you seriously think that every hair band in the eighties came up with the same hairstyle all at once? get real, everything's a scene, deal with it.
    roarinflames
    RJMan wrote: funny how metal repeats itself in everything, not to rag on the genre or anything, I love everything from eighties metal to bullet, but i find it funny how all the people who love eighties metal hate kids with emo haircuts and skinny jeans. They base thier opinion of a band on what type of fans they have, and i think that makes you so much more of a poser than just liking music based on whether you LIKE IT!!!. Do you seriously think that every hair band in the eighties came up with the same hairstyle all at once? get real, everything's a scene, deal with it.
    the haircuts are pretty lame though. im not a poser because i dont listen to what i think everyone else will agree with. for example, i'm the only one of my friends that listens to the darkness. everyone else i know hates them. but are they generic, hell no! the problem with scenecore bands is that they arent doing anything new compared to what theyve done for the last 4 years. on top of that, its overflowing with bands that are doing the same damn thing. and to top that off, a good portion of teenagers listen to it because they think its "cool" or they think they're more metal because they punch and kick when they thrash. don't get me wrong, i love metalcore, but most of the fans piss me off. they jump on this stupid ****ing bandwagon everytime a new genre pops up thats "in." trying to be part of the fans that have been there forever, when really they're just pissing them off. im a metalhead, and the way i look has nothing to do with the music i listen to, but to a lot of people, it does. theres my rant of the day
    leniwm1
    DONT CARE WAHT ANYONE SAYS. I LOVE THIS ALBUM AND THATS WAT MATTERS. DONT GIVE A FUCK IF PEOPLE DONT, YOUR LOSS!!
    Tierkönig
    I agree that the vocals aren't that great... 'The Poison' was much better in that. But I love the guitars in everything BFMV have released, and that's what UG is really about... who cares about vocals, I personally don'e listen to them in any song by any band...
    boyan89
    YAH THIS ALBUM KICKS ASS! AND THE NEW PROTEST THE HERO ALBUM IS OUT TODAY TOOOO WHOOOOO! BEST DAY EVER!! and yah this album is better than The Poison and the softer side of this album is terrific
    mrlee192
    im not really a huge fan of this band. listened to the album a few days ago its ok, nothing amazing. im not too bothered if its nothing new, its juts not amazing. However the first ballad off the album is really good.
    PLOP
    metal_maniac#1 wrote: Im seriously fu-king sick of people saying that just because a vocalist doesnt use full on screams or growls in metal, that they are using a james hetfield sound, fu-k that.... off the rant, i liked the album, love the fact that it's different, and some people can't handle it, haha.
    +298746092186409263406230476208334
    Reviewer Pete
    Golem29 wrote: Shame they picked the wrong guy to review this, to spare it the absolute thrashing it deserves.
    *enters* *waves to the masses* *leaves*
    SoASinger
    Im actually going to bo out and buy this one and the new Protest The Hero (if your into technical shit, youll love these guys) But it is true most bands are taking a softer course from there last album. Think about it though, your doing the best and heaviest you can so your record label wont drop your ass, so when they decide to keep you, you have more control of what you want to put out. I think after they get some bad reviews the next album will be better the The Poisen
    cloud041089
    Nathan_393 wrote: cloud041089 wrote: um. we're not saying the singing sounds like james hetfield just because he stopped screaming, we're saying he because DOES sound like hetfield. no one's saying m shadows or alex from atreyu sounds like hetfield are they?? matt tuck picked up a different style of clean vocals that's different from the poison, and that is hetfield wannabe vocals. he still leaves in a lot of the old style so that's good. unlike matt heafy where it's wannabe vocals the entire way through. He sounds nothing like Hetfield. Hetfield is way better and more aggressive than this. And BFMV's vocalist sounds really edited. It honestly sounds like it's been put through Pro Tools. And Trivium's singer is way better. I like the guitar work in BFMV though. It's kind of funny that BFMV get ragged on for their "Hetfield" vocals when people want Hetfield to try and sound the way he did way back when. :O Don't you people want Hetfield vocals? Is there no way to make you happy?
    maybe i shouldnt have specifically said hetfield, but he's up to something. like trying to sound 80s thrash. i noticed the pro tools sound too. i never meant to say i had much problem with what matt tuck is doing, cause he actually puts vocal variety in the album unlike heafy. i've just been trying to clear things up. and people want hetfield vocals from hetfield himself...
    SoASinger
    roarinflames wrote: and another thing. maybe thats why metalheads hate rap and emo(pop-punk). because most of their listeners change their look to fit in. what do metalheads do? we buy band shirts. i literally have over 50 band shirts. surprisingly, i only wear one every 3 or 4 days. so is that really an appearance change or is it a form of collection.
    Man who cares about what the look like or whats "metal" to wear. Trust me where i live I'll be the only person at a metal show wearing a Pro Club or my NWA shirt saggin my pants and still getting in the pit. So appearance doesnt really have anything to do with it.
    Scrabbit
    "The songwriting doesnt seem quite as original as it did on The Poison." Wha? I didn't think the songwriting was BAD on The Poison but it doesn't sound much different to the myriads of other Metalcore bands out there.
    stoney920
    The Poison was probably my favorite album of all time. I heard the SAF-EP and didn't really like it. BFMV is probably one of the bands of this generation that has the post potential to be amazing and I personally already think they are. But I must say I don't really like the new vocal style that Matt uses. SAF is the only song I've heard so far though so i can't really make much of a decision form that. I plan on buying the album anyways.
    leniwm1
    THIS IS TO ALL THE NAYSAYERS IN THE HOUSE. I KNOW WHY YOU DONT ENJOY THE NEW DISC... YOU ARE LISTENING TO IT THE WRONG WAY... YOU NEED TO CRANK IT UP!!!
    roarinflames
    tbarrettl wrote: boreamor wrote: I love this album. They are more melodic and seriously, it's nice hearing a riff in a Major Key (Hearts Burst Into Fire.) And the guitar work is more harmonized and it sounds amazing. No this is not the normal Bullet, this is the new bullet. A7x changed musically. It's called progression. They've kept the main elements, but they're still amazing. Though so far Bullet hasn't done any Cheesy Tim Burton wannabe songs and videos, they just have stayed true to the Classics as they said they would and certainly have adopted a sound like Iron Maiden, GnR, and Metallica.
    i have to admit though that song was awesome the first time i heard it. and burton "wannabe"... ... that song was mixed by two of the guys that did nightmare before christmas, as a matter of fact
    Seidenschnur
    I hope everybody stops "screaming". Unless you're Phil Anselmo, then piss off. And the whole "let's scream more than the next prick" 1-uping is lame and it has no soul. Maybe that's the point...I don't know.
    Kiotaka
    Also guys, give Tuck a break! It's a miracle he was able to to this album in the first place due to the trouble he's been having with his throat! Jay definetly stepped it up on the screams.
    Kiotaka
    p.s. I gotta agree with the fact that the poison was pretty poppy. At one point I was one of very few that knew about them, then when the stupid emo's got into them, it kinda ruined it. But I wasn't going to not listen to them cause of it.
    Gregray88
    Wow, some of you people are pathetic. He didnt stop screaming because he has a throat problem. He probably stopped screaming because he got sick of it, like seriously screaming is getting old and he is a musician and he can do whatever the **** he wants, not screaming doesnt make u any less "metal". Now stop arguing about him not screaming and just post your views on the album. I thought this album was okay, it was still better than the poison.
    jeromyrb
    I think this album is a good follow-up to the poison. Everone ive talked to about it says its changed a bit, but still keeps some things the same in order to please the fans of the poison. I don't think its fair that people are saying that the new album sucks because of tucks voice and the lack of screaming. I hate when people just listen to the singing in the music. This albums got some pretty kick ass riffs and solos, and its obvious that the band has improved. One thing I think they could do better is to make their songs more unique. I like it when bands do something besides the traditional song structure. Ive heard complaints about all of the songs sounding the same, and i think that mixing it up would help that problem.
    mawood83
    Everyone is saying this album isn't as great as The Poison, but you gotta give it some time to grow on you. The poisons been out for awhile and everyone has had time to love it..give this one some time
    Mcrfan1992
    anyone know where to find the creeping death cover on the bonus version without buying it on itunes?
    skindred
    imo, the vocals in this album sound more like old school trivium with the actual singing and thrash sound. i do like waking the demon, nice little main riff
    Rosseta Stoned
    seusion wrote: haha I kinda like everyone who thinks that his throatproblem affected his voice. I have some news for you people who doesn't know anything about singing - it doestn't. He may have a hard time to produce same sound as before but trust me he will, the voice doesn't change due thoose problems, you just have to use more energy to produce the sound. Wich sometimes results in straining your voice. And to thoose who thinks screaming hurts your throat, think again. The voice is, and has in all times been used to produce this aggressive sound. If you use your technique correcty you won't feel a dime when you scream, just like singing. I know, I'm a singer who does both clean and aggressive vocals. No problem at all. So cut the crap about his throat pressigure..
    Yah, but how would you know if he screams "properly". You cant just listen to different people scream and then say, Oh, he screams more proper than the other.
    Nathan_393
    awsomeguitarguy wrote: metal_maniac#1 wrote: Im seriously fu-king sick of people saying that just because a vocalist doesnt use full on screams or growls in metal, that they are using a james hetfield sound, fu-k that.... off the rant, i liked the album, love the fact that it's different, and some people can't handle it, haha. Yeah but this still is a bit metallica-ish
    when was the last time you listened to Metallica? This is way worse than Metallica. Guitar harmonies, thrash-inspired parts and sung vocals don't equal Metallica. They equal pop metal.