Every Time I Die

Album Review: Every Time I Die – Ex Lives

Look, here’s the deal. If you’re an existing ETID fan who likes each release by the band to be consistent, then consider this a 10/10 album. From Keith Buckley’s furious screams on intro ‘Underwater Bimbos From Outer Space’ it’s clear to everyone that this is very much business as usual.

And business it is. ETID’s confrontational, in-your-face aggression is never more present than the double-bass swagger of ‘I Suck (Blood)’, while the banjo-led ‘Partying Is Such Sweet Sorrow’ adds the characteristic southern tinge to proceedings. The punk-cum-blastbeat drumming of ‘The Book of Dilemma’ is, for lack of a better word, mental, and surely the only frontman capable of keeping up with its barrage is Keith Buckley.
Every Time I Die Ex Lives Artwork
However, even at its half-hour running time, ‘Ex Lives’ isn’t always interesting or innovative. This is very ETID, and more than a few tracks sound as if they could have appeared on earlier releases. The average song length of 2 minutes means that no track really overstays its welcome, but the more typical sounding songs start to blur together.

That’s not to say there isn’t some special stuff here. ‘Revival Mode’ is a mostly melodic affair that has a southern charm to it, and its clean vocals make it stand out amongst the other anger-led tracks on the album. The slow-burn of ‘Indian Giver’ shows off a majestic, more experimental side that has riffs so big that Mastodon would be proud. And, of course, just because a lot of the aggression displayed isn’t exactly breaking new ground, ‘Touch Yourself’ has a certain drum passage that is bound to set pits in motion no matter where ETID play.

If you’ve enjoyed everything the band have released so far, then this is a perfect release. There are enough tracks (and quite a few bonus tracks if you’re willing to pay more, they’re worth it) to keep you satisfied, regardless of the short running time. Keith Buckley is on fire throughout, with his anatoginistic, town-crier like delivery. Even though the experimental tracks are a little slower, they are still very much Every Time I Die tracks, and their knack for writing is a good melody is clearly not wasted.

The only problem is, if you’re not already a fan, there is not much here that’s going to convince you otherwise. If you require some sort of let-up or a little variety throughout the course of an album, then ‘Ex Lives’ isn’t for you. But of course, if that’s the case, then you probably didn’t bother with any other ETID release anyway.

‘Ex Lives’ is consistent, it’s aggressive, it’s urgent, and it’s fleeting. It’s a rock ‘n’ roll album. It’s an Every Time I Die album.

7/10

     

About Scott Wilson

Having spent the last twenty years of his life telling his friends his opinion of the latest release by every band he has ever heard of, Scott is an enthusiastic journalist and keen writer. A fan of every genre of music, though his heart firmly belongs to rock, he has been spending far too much money on gigs and not enough on digs. Reachable by either email or Twitter where copious amounts of commentating and general excitement can also be found.

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