In some of the past reviews I have done, I have tried to describe the sound of a band’s music through some other artist. “They have their voice,” “the guitarist plays like this,” “they move like that,” etc. It is not done AT ALL to demean a band for their uniqueness and their own creative outlook, but when trying to describe a new song to someone, it is normal to reference what people know best. I am happy to say that in a long line of reviewing, this week I had the pleasure of reviewing a band’s work that is a sound all their own.
Bury Me A Lion, a New York City-based rock group comprised of Jarett Gilbert (Vocals), Sam Einhorn (Guitars), Mike Ostuni (Drums), and Yuri Soussov (Bass), released their debut LP, Year of the Lion, back in April 2012. This LP is honestly one of the best collections of music I have heard in a while from a band, and I am ecstatic to be sharing their music with you.
My favorite track off this LP happens to be track one, “Be Your Own Bomb.” I was immediately intrigued by the guitar work coming into the track, already tapping my foot and bobbing my head along to the drum beat. What fascinates me even more about the track is the layers of rhythm that coincide perfectly with one another, each instrument bringing its own flair to the track which allows for such a inimitable blend of sound. My favorite part of the song is when the handclaps come in along with the band’s background vocals accompanying Gilbert’s voice. I’m a sucker for handclaps done right in a song.
Each band member holds their own in the songs, but Gilbert’s vocals are truly the powerhouse of Bury Me A Lion. He carries the melodies so powerfully in each track, emitting such raw emotion through every lyric he tastes. What is also nice is that none of the lyrics are lost in the music. It’s pretty rare to be able to write out lyrics to a song you just heard, but that is just the case with every song in Year of the Lion.
If “Be Your Own Bomb” doesn’t get your blood pumping to Bury Me A Lion, take a listen to “Metabolism.” I found myself singing along…okay, well screaming the lyrics… “I want to scream and know that I won’t make sound.” Personally I’m partial to the song’s original production, but not so much of the remix. The remix has some great parts, but it takes away such critical parts in the original song – like the harmonious bass line, of which I’m a fan.
I’m not really crazy about the production of the LP, as it does sound a little empty in some parts of the songs. When the chorus or bridge of the track comes in, they are dynamically the peaks of the songs, but don’t really convey as such. I would really like to hear the bass enhanced throughout the tracks, in the drums and bass guitar, in order to better serve the intensity the songs are trying to convey.
Lyrically, I couldn’t imagine the LP being any better in that department. There is an equal balance of great one-liners, as well as profound writing concepts. Einhorn and Gilbert share primary songwriting duties in the band, and their team dynamic is really carried in the music. Gilbert’s melodies and lyrics mend perfectly with Einhorn’s guitar progressions, allowing for there to be no negative musical collision displayed in the tracks.
Overall, I am very pleased about the entirety of Year of the Lion and highly suggest checking the rest of the songs out. Tracks I also enjoyed were “Dinosaur” and “The Road,” a slower acoustic piece that displays the band’s musicianship.
Be sure to check out all the songs on the album here: http://burymealion.bandcamp.com
If you like it as much as I do, remember, sharing is caring.