There’s fewer bands with the following and status of Bring Me The Horizon popping up in the charts these days and, whatever your feelings on their musical directions, you have to admire them for entering uncharted territories and making it work where others haven’t.
With sixth album Amo, Bring Me have pushed their experimentation even further. Since their fourth album, Sempiternal, the band have rebranded their musical vision, incorporating electronic and pop elements into their sound. If That’s The Spirit was a more accessible version of Sempiternal, this record is even more so, but its methods are more creative and interesting than their last album.
Opening track ‘I Apologise If You Feel Something’ is a clear statement that what’s to come is going to be different, featuring a smooth psychedelic vibe which serves as a polarising introduction. There’s a calmness to this track, but it effortlessly transitions into lead single ‘Mantra’.
While ‘Mantra’ has been around for a while now, having released initially back in August, it still sounds just as fresh and exciting. The track is reminiscent of the band’s work on That’s The Spirit but with a modern and experimental twist. While the album plunges into various directions, the likes of ‘Mantra’, ‘Sugar Honey Ice & Tea’ and ‘Wonderful Life’ will satisfy the fans who liked the heavier tracks on the band’s last record.
‘Nihilist Blues’ takes the album into a trance-heavy direction. The track features Grimes and would be unrecognisable as a Bring Me track if it wasn’t for frontman Oli Sykes’ vocals on the track. It takes a little bit of time to digest this one, but it quickly becomes a highlight of the record.
Along with serving as the album’s second single, ‘Wonderful Life’ is in fact one of the band’s best tracks to date. The song features some incredible riffs and a rich, stunning breakdown which is sure to be a hit when performed live. The lyrics: “Lone, getting high on a Saturday night / I’m on the edge of a knife / Nobody cares if I’m dead or alive / Oh, what a wonderful life”, tie in perfectly with Bring Me’s collection of sing-back anthems, which they are well known for.
As the third single to be released from the album, ‘Medicine’ garnered mixed reviews upon its release, but fits nicely amongst the track listing and is a definite grower. The gentle background chimes are reminiscent of a poppy Sempiternal if that’s even possible to imagine! The track reflects moving on from a broken relationship, with the assuring lyrics: “Some people are a lot like clouds, you know / ’Cause life’s so much brighter when they go”.
‘Fresh Bruises’ takes a trip back into the trance/psychedelic space created by ‘Nihilist Blues’ earlier on, but packs richer production. There’s a definite sense of innovation with this record.
If you were looking for a ballad, look no further than ‘Mother Tongue’, a chilled number which features powerful drum patterns. Described by Sykes as a love song for his wife, the track explores the connection between the couple despite the language barrier they have between them.
Closing track ‘I Don’t Know What To Say’ is one of the rawest sounding tracks Bring Me have produced. With an acoustic tinge, the song features some soothing strings and overall beautiful production, backing the emotional lyrics written as a tribute to Sykes’ friend who he lost to cancer. Sykes has also stated he wants to dedicate the track to anybody affected by the disease.
Amo is a truly unique album that sits comfortably in Bring Me’s discography. While That’s The Spirit was more accessible it was, at times, disappointing but this record manages to get the balance right, while in fact ending up even more experimental and creative.
This record really shows off the band’s talent and diversity, there really is something for everybody on this album.
It’s hard to predict where they could go after this, but I’m sure they will continue to divide opinion while proving their relevance and ability to stand amongst the greats.