Strictly generic angst-ridden overkill

Fredrik Nordström must be getting pretty well used to being the go-to man for Australian metalcore bands now.

Following in the footsteps of the likes of Contrive and I Killed the Prom Queen, Buried in Verona is the latest local act to beat a path to his door. This band’s previous album was a rather flat, lifeless collection of generic metalcore that ticked all the right boxes but generally failed to step outside the circle. Nordström’s production has at least given Buried in Verona a punchier sound that’s more in line with their metal pretentions.

Despite the cringe-inducing title and the artwork that looks like a toddler chewed up a crayon and then vomited, Saturday Night Sever makes better use of melodies and features more memorable songs than Circle the Dead, but the band still refuses to really break any new ground. Buried in Verona has improved without really changing very much, apparently still content to follow the most basic metalcore template available without injecting too much of their own personality. There’s a dash of electronics on a couple of tracks, most noticably at the beginning and towards the end, but unlike Anime Fire, who weave beats into their music, here they’re just tacked on as if the band felt a last-minute need to make a half-arsed attempt at individuality. Like the previous album, the song titles don’t seem to have much to do with the lyrics. There’s another Cluedo-inspired one (“Professor Plum…”) and most of the others just plain suck: “Hangin’ Hoes by Their Toes” plumbs the depths of immature tough-guy posturing directly reflected in their lyrics. Even the promisingly-titled “Rohypnol Sunrise” offers nothing more than another melodramatically angry song full of homicidal rage as if these guys have never had a relationship in their lives that didn’t end in betrayal and murder, and totally lacking in any sense of irony, self-mocking or humour. Still, the album sounds huge. The drumming is rock solid and without being earth-shattering, the riffs are vicious and catchy. The lead guitar work has also taken a turn for the better, although BiV was never shabby in that department. They also rely much less on breakdowns than many other bands.

Saturday Night Sever is a marked improvement on Buried in Verona’s 2008 effort, but it is unlikely to appeal to those who aren’t already fans of their strictly generic angst-ridden overkill. If you like to throw yourself around a moshpit while a dude screams about how much life sucks and how hard he’d punch your face, this will more than satisfy you. For those seeking a more sophisticated, mature worldview, look elsewhere.

1. The End
2. Temptress
3. Saturday Night Sever
4. Professor Plum in the Ballroom with the Candlestick
5. Hangin’ Hoes by the Toes
6. Go Go Gadget Suicide
7. Rohypnol Sunrise
8. Bell Ringer
9. You Left Me With No Goodbye
10. Cut Wrists & Sinking Ships
11. The Beginning