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Between The Buried And Me – The Parallax II: Future Sequence

Metal Blade Records 2012
Between The Buried And Me - The Parallax II: Future Sequence

A continuation of the space traveling characters established on “The Parallax: Hypersleep Dialogues“; the latest album from Between The Buried And Me is very much a gated listen. Thanks to the sheer density of the music itself, plus the dizzying number of part changes and genre shifts, it’s almost a given that little will be retained during initial spins.

It’s only on say your fifth go around with the album that things start to click. The clever intricacies become more apparent and the erratic song progressions begin to make sense. Once this welcoming state of consciousness is achieved, “Future Sequence” reveals itself to be a tightly wound and unrelenting tour through the musical cosmos.

A lethal display of progressive brutality whose subdued playfulness is perhaps more symphonic and serious than ever. It’s an exceptional listen to be sure though—one fully capable of bewilderment and contusions.

Be it the kooky Mr. Bungle-styled carnival sequences that break up “Extremeophile Elite” and “Bloom“; the smokey guitar and accompanying electrified mesh of “Telos“; or the rubbery fretless bass tones featured on “Melting City“—both the bands creative writing and musical ability are always at the forefront. To have a repertoire that can see stark melodies beautifully emerge amidst a crushing display of sonic violence (see “Silent Flight Parliament“) and not have the listener bat an eye is wholly impressive.

Truly “The Parallax II: Future Sequence” once again cements the bands position as a leading act when it comes to the field of spacey progressive technical metal. It’s a fearlessly celestial undertaking that bridges shimmering prog rock with bestial carnage; all while enrapturing and enlightening in the same instance.

Sure it may be a touch too heady as it certainly finds the outfit at their most grandiose. But it accomplishes much worthy of praise and features so many highlights that you just might discover a new galaxy hidden somewhere amongst the songs.

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    ( 59 votes, 4.80 stars )
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COMMENTS

72
    • avatar

    • I have respect for these guys. I buy their records and listen to them…..but I always scratch my head at their repeated decision to include ‘kooky carnival’ interlude parts in tracks. Why? Quick, this track must have a random circus music injection!

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        • They Ate Their Macaroons in Silence     October 4, 2012 at 1:56 am

          I have something special from Adelaide for this christening.
          I received an e-mail from Metal Blade my vinyl shipped yesterday..
          Bring on the circus!! lol

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        • They Ate Their Macaroons in Silence     October 4, 2012 at 2:03 am

          They’re sick of their circus being silent..
          Ok I’m done..
          Until I actually listen to it.

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        • Is that a real question? Or were u just trying to hurt my feelings? Or are u just that stupid? I take it all 3.

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        • SpinSwimScream     October 5, 2012 at 8:54 pm

          Yes, I am as stupid as your racist comment that I just can’t seem to let slip my mind. Weren’t you the one telling someone the other day to relax and learn how to take a joke? So relax, ya fucktard.

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        • Wook is a Faggot     October 5, 2012 at 5:43 pm

          I like theprp. I wish I didn’t have to encounter worthless pieces of shit like you when I come here.

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        • MyDarkPassenger     October 8, 2012 at 9:44 am

          I was trying to reply to the Wook is a faggot guy. Just being cheeky but now I look retarded. Thanks technology!

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        • This dude with the racist shit again. You can change your avatar/icon/logo all you want, we all know you are a Sevendust fanboy who cannot possibly comprehend the density of a BTBAM album, and seeing as though you gave it 5 stars without even listening to it even further solidifies that. When are you planning to leave the PRP for good? I would like to know, so we can plan the going away party…

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        • What did I say about using the term fanboy? If u were standing in front of me right now I’d stone cold stunner your ass.

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        • Mastotronic     October 8, 2012 at 6:18 pm

          ironic, though, being a racist sevendust fanboy. then again, no one ever said ignorance was based in reason.

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        • Gadupahn Madiq     October 8, 2012 at 1:26 pm

          Your constant racist comments on this site are appalling. I hope you find peace.

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        • Mastotronic     October 8, 2012 at 6:17 pm

          we’re all incredibly impressed with your intelligence. why don’t you further impress us with a phenomenal display of smarts by running yourself over with your own car? if not to the point of death, at least your balls so you can’t reproduce. although, if you really are the ignorant redneck fucktard you proclaim to be, you probably already have a quite a few jail bound offspring. with tails.

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    • Jarvicious     October 4, 2012 at 3:31 pm

      Disclaimer: I love this band. Since Alaska. I’ve seen them countless times, and I’m sure the uber fanboys have their downvote cannons at the ready.

      That being said, I’ve listened to this record a few times through (don’t judge me :) The mega pack is on the way in the mail) and while their technical prowess never ceases to fail, I’m overall fairly bored with it. It’s not to say that it doesn’t contain their usual dazzling riffage (see Selkies) and it is by far Richardson’s most impressive work to date, but it just doesn’t give me the tinglies like some of their most recent stuff. Colors! The first time I heard White Walls I literally drove off the road and had to swerve back on to the highway. The shit had feeling. Heart. Energy, whether it was rage or malaise or fuckin something. P II sounds like they found a book of practice licks and wrote a syncopated chord structure around it, and you can’t tell me that track one doesn’t remind you of Cheryl Crow’s “Soak up the Sun”.

      I guess my opinion is relative mostly to BTBAM’s other records because overall wook’s right on in the sense that their writing keeps improving, but sometimes it reminds me of a Yngwie Malmsteen record. Impressive? Sure, but it just kind of lacks that…something.

      End disclaimer: I’ve been in a shitty mood the past few weeks so that may have something to do with it. Then again, why are you even reading reviews? Go buy the shit and make up your own mind. Hell, I have a buddy who, if BTBAM took a shit on CD and called it a record, he would buy 10 and give them away as presents. Fanboys will be fanboys.

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        • Dude, fuck off. He brought up his own personal opinion of the album, spoke his sentiments in an organized, well thought-out manner, and you had to fucking reply in the least mature way possible. I fucking love this album, but still, did you have to be that low?

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        • Relax, just having a little fun. Seems like u need a drink. Meet me down the street at the local bar. First rounds on me.

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      • SpinSwimScream     October 5, 2012 at 8:20 am

        @Jarvicious, I feel the same. I have been a huge fan since their self-titled, and have seen them quite a few times and… I know they are ridiculously talented, but a band like BTBAM (that basically has no limitations) doesn’t need to try as hard to impress everyone the way that they are. I miss the real feel behind their music. And when they finally come to what seems to be a great part of a song, they only play it once before throwing it away.

        Don’t get me wrong, I still love this band and will always have respect for them. I have bought every album and DVD, so I’m a gay fanboy too. Many will probably disagree with me, but The Silent Circus will always be my favorite, and I don’t see them topping it anytime soon. I won’t forget seeing them play it live right when it came out. They used to not only be the most technical band with feeling, they were also the most brutally heavy band ever.

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    • with every btbam album, you need to disengage from your current digs. this album is their longest to date, so if you’re rocking out 45-50 minutes album tops, and then put this bad boy in, it won’t jelly. it is crucial to listen to this independently with disciplined ears. This definitely got my attention after the lulled, tedious listens of TGM & the previous installment.

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    • DeadHearts     October 5, 2012 at 2:59 pm

      Detroit is an awesome city and so is this album. Not their best imo best really good. I would actually like to see them make an album with some songs that are much shorter. It would be a good change of pace.

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    • Jarvicious     October 6, 2012 at 11:40 am

      Where is Wurst when you need him. It just doesn’t seem like a proper name calling, 6th grade battle of who has the more efficient caps lock key without him. You kids need to calm the fuck down.

      And @kturl, is it that difficult to type out the word “you”? Super simple stuff, and you may be surprised at the satisfaction gained from creating a fully formed, grammatically correct sentence all by your lonesome. Gayboy, out.

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    • I’m all for freedom of speech but some of the pricks that post on here really bring the site down. Wurst has fucked off for whatever reason and I was enjoying reading the comments again, and now this kturl69 tit has turned up and spoilt the party for everyone again. kturl69: Go away. You’re not impressing anyone.

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    • Loving this album right now. I have enjoyed everything they have done (that’s right, no missteps on the great misdirect, that album is awesome). I cannot disagree more with Jarvicious’ review, although i respect his opinion on it, on where he talks of them basically playing a book of practice riffs over a syncopated chord structure. I don’t think i have any clue exactly what a syncopated chord structure is, i am forced to believe he refers to the recurring chord patterns and runs that kind of refresh themselves throughout the album. The more i listen, there are quite a few of these moments that reappear with a different sort of take on it, and a different feel. It even grabs a moment or two from the first EP (walking…in..to…a….certain state…of…DESPERATION!). These recurring moments tend to gel the whole concept album in my opinion, and love hearing the alternate takes and feels of these chord structures and patterns.

      Except Bloom…this is the truck stop from hell on their adventure through time and space. I honestly feel this track can be completely omitted from the album, and the surf u.s.a. moment on this song kinda just made me shiver…it was almost too out of place for a band that generally can stray far and not be out of place.

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    • MyDarkPassenger     October 8, 2012 at 9:49 am

      Does the album have ANYTHING to do with Green Lantern or are they just toying with me?

      P.S. I’ll refrain from reviewing this record (as I do most) because I am WAY too old and infatuated with simple beat structures and harmony to enjoy a BTBAM album. Jesus Christ that shit is noisy!

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    • I say the word “nigger” one time and suddenly I’m a racist redneck. I’m city folk. Silly buffoons. And trust me, if u worked in my store and had to deal with the kind of people I have to deal with on a daily basis, you’d be slightly racist as well. Just saying.

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      • They Ate Their Macaroons in Silence     October 8, 2012 at 10:22 pm

        Everyone has prejudices, it’d be a lie to say “No, I don’t.”
        A mature human will treat other people with the respect and attention everyone deserves (given that you and and your family are ultimately safe, no matter the outcome), to allow the preconceived notion to manifest or hopefully & typically prove wrong.
        You, however, have created another unfortunate prejudice that allows me to feel sketched out around Detroit Lions fans. And although I am not serious about that, my point is you’re a douchebag.

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      • It has a very “Queen” vibe. It’s a good album dude. Sometimes we like to talk racism, politics & religion. We steer off track from time to time but we always get back on the road in the end.

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        • Agreed on the Queen vibe. In parts, of course. BTBAM steers through influences like this site steers through topics.

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      • They Ate Their Macaroons in Silence     October 9, 2012 at 11:03 pm

        I have a Sears 22″, self-propelled mower with a 6.75 HP Briggs-Stratton engine. It is 2 years old. Last Summer, it started running out of gas after only about 30 minutes, or less, of use. I say running out of gas, but the tank still had plenty of gas in it, and the engine would stop running. I top off the tank and start it up again, it runs fine, and I can finish mowing. I used to get 2 full yard mowing sessions out of less than a tank full (~1 hour). Any ideas on this situation would be appreciated.
        Thanks!

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    • southpawchew     October 11, 2012 at 7:38 am

      I was going to comment on how this album is fucking incredible. The concept the music the odd influences ect,ect,ect,. But after reading the “comments” fuck it. This site actually did hit a new low. Can’t we save all the fun bullshit for limp bizkit news?

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    • Back on subject…

      This is a real grower of an album. Some very interesting parts that keep you coming back for more. I love it when bands revisit riffs like the whole

      “Walking, into a certain state…” part. That kind of stuff gets me excited, Dream Theater style.

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    • This album is clown shoes. I love that they’re clearly doing whatever the fuck they want at this point, and still seeing success, but as of now: I’m done. I held on to BTBAM for dear life, I even liked the Great Misdirect a lot, but getting behind this band through another pop-starting, carnival-interluding 70-minute record has turned into an act of holding one’s breath. I just can’t do it anymore, to the point of spasm.

      So I’m paddling back to shore, BTBAM. Converge is having a beach party. But hey, have fun out there. Keep swimming to the fucking moon.

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    • BAMBIRAPTOR     October 18, 2012 at 7:14 am

      Man, I was holding off on reading the review/comments so I could give it 8-10 spins with a clear mind. BTBAM really sparks dialogue for me. Didn’t know it was going to be THIS dialogue. It’s always a shame when our beautiful Palace is seized by ignorant morons. Trollers gonna troll, I suppose.

      As for the album, my initial thoughts:

      - As always, the band’s playing and composition are awe-inspiring. When I hear new BTBAM material, my first thought is often, “why are other bands even bothering to make music if this band can do this.”
      - The album flows better than their previous full lengths, to me. It’s an album-album as opposed to a collection of songs album. Sort of feels like three movements: tracks 1-5; 6-9; 10-12.
      - I love all the spacey keys, guitar effects, and lyrical themes…That makes sense though since some of my favorite bands are Hum, Deftones, Failure, Cynic, Mastodon, Isis.
      - Tommy shines on this album. There’s more variation his scream types, which I have been hoping for for for a while. He also continues to become a better and more varied singer. I even hear some Mars Volta on some of his higher-pitched sung vocals, where they get kinda spacey and nasaly. I dig it.
      - The opening to Astral Body REALLY sounds like Rush’s “Spirit of the Radio,” and the entire song OWNS.
      - “Lay Your Ghosts to Rest” is already one of my favorite BTBAM songs. Despite some comments regarding a lack of feeling on this album, the refrain “All that is left is new material, myself, day in day out,” is some of their most emotionally moving stuff, for me anyway.
      - “Extremophile Elite” is a great song, but when Tommy sings “my body” in the refrain, for some reason, it makes me think of Johnathan Davis, and I’m having trouble getting past it.
      - I seem to like “Melting City,” which I find kind of boring, a lot less than others, and “Silent Flight Parliament,” which is a fucking onslaught, a lot more.
      - My almost-two-year old is walking around the house going, “walking…a…cer…state…walking.”

      Those are my post-eight-or-so-listens thoughts. I’ll have a clearer picture after another ten or whatever. Kinda went on a rant, there. I’m interested in what other influences ya’ll are hearing, and how you think it stacks up. This is a band I love talking about.

      Viva BTBAM!

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      • They Ate Their Macaroons in Silence     October 21, 2012 at 1:00 am

        I wanted to reply because I’m glad to hear someone as excited about this album as I am.
        BtBaM’s newest release is the perfect place for me to go when I have all of this hatred and confusion about myself and the world not realizing it’s one beautiful organism and we’re self destructing in too many ways. It is a place I can go when i feel overwhelmed with joy. Life is such a difficult balancing act and when I recognize something that can balance well, I tend to be inspired and look up to it/them. I feel their music is a beautiful balance of technicality AND emotion.
        I really latch onto them because it encapsulates fear and love and all in between. This is something 94% of bands could never offer. And they do it with adroitness.
        It’s a really exciting journey that I feel lucky to be a part of. These fellows are extremely gifted and complement each other and their art.
        The album is confident and has no slack.
        This is what I love and live for.
        Sounds like your son is already showing potential as a prog rock genius, my two year old boy is into beats a lot more than vocals.. as am I.
        Anyways, happy listening, BambiRaptor!

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        • BAMBIRAPTOR     October 21, 2012 at 11:37 am

          Thanks for the response, and glad to hear there’s another little one running around rocking out to BTBAM! Perhaps the future is brighter than I alllow myself to believe.

          I’m another 7 listens in since my initial thoughts, and it just keeps getting better. I keep hearing more and more spacey elements, which I love. Frequently, I can make more and more sense of the composition with repeated BTBAM listens, but on this one, I’m also having the experience of hearing new sounds like i do with Devin Townsend’s or Isis’ material.

          Fantastic album. Can’t wait to see them do this stuff live.

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        • They Ate Their Macaroons in Silence     October 21, 2012 at 12:53 pm

          I guess I made an assumption you have a boy.
          With all their positive feedback, and reaching 22 on the billboard, I’d be a little surprised if they didn’t do a full tour playing it in its entirety like they did with “Colors.”
          I’m not complaining, but I’ve seen them play close to 10 times, and their sets lacked much variation. I’ve only ever witnessed them play one from self-titled and one from “The Silent Circus.”
          Plus, I always try and holler “Croakies & Boatshoes,” and “Autodidact,” but they’re not taking requests. Haha

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