Bring Me The Horizon: Genre is dead and ‘amo’ is a quality album

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Bring Me The Horizon released their new album “amo” last Friday. (Bring Me The Horizon Facebook screenshot)

Bring Me The Horizon released their new album “amo” last Friday. (Bring Me The Horizon Facebook screenshot)

Bring Me The Horizon released their new album “amo” last Friday, and, to put it simply, a lot of fans aren’t happy. The band’s early albums were heavy metal, but through the years, their style has changed. This new album and style aren’t going over well with much of their audience.

The change is due in part to lead singer Oli Sykes. He strained his voice after so many years of screaming at live concerts and not taking proper care of his voice, which is something fans have been annoyed about for years. Many complained that he sounded awful live, but then continued to complain when the band stopped playing some of their older albums at shows because Sykes simply couldn’t do it anymore.

Their newer two albums, “Sempiternal” and “That’s The Spirit,” are much more toned down in comparison to their older work, and a lot of fans hate the even bigger change that “amo” brought. The comments on the band’s Instagram are enough to get a sense of the general opinion on the album. One user wrote “God damn this is so lazy. Even by pop standards. Not a blind fan like everyone else.” A lot of others read generic things like “This is terrible” and “Bring back the metalcore.”

But the thing is, the album isn’t bad. Sykes can sing and has a good voice even when he’s not screaming. While “amo” definitely has a more pop and EDM-like vibe, it’s actually pretty vibey. The lyrics are consistent with the writing you’d find on their older albums. The only difference is the genre, which is quickly becoming an outdated concept anyways. There’s a reason most bands struggle to pinpoint exactly what genre they are these days.

Bands are allowed to change their sound, fans don’t have to like it. Just don’t listen to an artist’s newer stuff if you don’t like their new style. It doesn’t take away from how much you enjoy their other albums. Musicians are under no obligation to stick to doing only what you like; it’s their art and they can do what they want with it. If you don’t want to listen to the album, then don’t, but you don’t need to rant on social media about it.

The feedback and general hatred for “amo” is hilarious in context when you actually listen to the album. The band is well-aware of what the fans think of them now. In the song “heavy metal,” Sykes completely calls out the fans who hate the band’s new sound. The first verse includes the lyric “You got that something special,” which is changed in the second verse to “You had that something special.” This is followed by the line “You know what we want, why not give it to us?” which is obviously a commentary on things the fans have been saying to them.

The song doesn’t even try to hide this meaning. The chorus is “Yeah, I keep picking petals / I’m afraid you don’t love me anymore / ‘Cause some kid on the ‘gram said he used to be a fan / But this sh*t ain’t heavy metal / But that’s alright.”

The song ends with Sykes screaming the line “No this ain’t heavy metal,” and unfortunately a lot of fans are missing the entire point and citing that as the only good part of the song or the album as a whole. But if anything is clear, it’s that Bring Me The Horizon knows people are upset about their music, but they don’t care and are enjoying making the music they want to make. Half of their past songs are about not caring what others think, so this shouldn’t be a surprise.

Going through more of the album, “fresh bruises” is almost entirely instrumental, which is a drastic change from how lyric-heavy the rest of the band’s work has been. I think it’s one of the weaker songs on the album for this reason, but I still found myself jamming out to it.

If you’re skeptical about “amo,” “mother” reminds me of the general style of their last album, so that might be a good place to start.

Sykes raps a bit in “amo,” and I don’t know how to else to describe it other than wild. He’s surprisingly good at it. It’s included in “why you gotta kick me while i’m down?,” which is also one of the only songs on the album that includes Syke’s more “aggressive” singing. It’s not quite screaming, but it’s about as close as this album gets to it.

Overall, it’s a good album. I’ve had it on repeat for the past few days. It’s very obviously not metal, and it’s drastically different from the rest of Bring Me The Horizon’s discography, but it’s still good. If you prefer Sykes’ screaming, then go listen to their old albums. Different doesn’t mean bad, and I’m all for the band continuing to explore their sound.

Rating: 3/5


Courtney Gavitt is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at courtney.gavitt@uconn.edu.

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