Friday, 21 February 2014 15:10

Between the Buried and Me's Jet Propulsion to Disengage in Grand Rapids

Written by  Robby Hartley
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Between the Buried and Me wsg Deafheaven, Intronaut, The Kindred
The Intersection, Grand Rapids
March 4, 6:30 p.m.
$18 advance, $22 day of show, (616) 451-8232

Call it an obvious fact, but outer space is complex and big; so is the dense, dynamic style of the progressively evolving technical metal group Between the Buried and Me.

This past fall, the band toured and played the entirety of its latest album, The Parallax II: Future Sequence (2012). The shows were complemented by imagery contained within the album's booklet, which illustrates and lyrically guides listeners along the spiritual, intergalactic journey introduced in the first Parallax album, the band's debut on Metal Blade Records. Running more than 70 minutes, Future Sequence features some of the band's shortest tracks, as well as longest - a trait which the band developed as a signature by the release of its 2007 album, Colors.

"There's a better idea of what's going on within songs and writing around them, with a focus on songwriting more than anything. That's the thing that I thought we improved on the most with The Parallax II," said Dan Briggs, BTBAM bassist.

Such focus is drawn in part from several of the band members' individual side projects, like Briggs' jazz-fusion band Trioscapes or the experimental Orbs, the latter of which started by a creative spark between Briggs and former Cradle of Filth keyboardist Ashley Ellylon. Orbs' debut album Asleep Next to Science (2010) manifested from Briggs' leftover energy post-Colors and exhibits a science and space-like feel akin to Future Sequence.

"Writing with [Ashley], I really developed a more mature sense of thinking about songs [as a whole] and not just parts," Briggs said. "Going from the Colors mentality to writing these weird, space-rock songs that are kind of hard to describe genre-wise. Ashley really helped me hone in all my energy and try to figure out what's best for songs."

For BTBAM, the outlook after Future Sequence is certainly a future toward something, though currently unspecified and taking its natural course.

"There are so many adventures and places to go that we just haven't before," Briggs said. "When I'm playing with Walter [Fancourt] in Trioscapes. .. or Ashley in Orbs ... I pick up so much. I pick up so much new stuff and I apply it to those groups, but then I come back to Between the Buried and Me, and there's so much [to expand upon]. It's never going to end."

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