Burns Out Bright – Save Yourself A Lifetime (CD)

The instrumental opening to “Save Yourself A Lifetime” is familiar to fans of emotive rock, but Burns Out Bright is smart in the sense that they include enough new material to distinguish themselves from the rest of emo. Coming out of the instrumental segment of their opening track with wailing guitars, Burns Out Bright ups the ante by throwing in double vocals at all the most important points for this seven-minute track. An interesting opening is taken during the stuttering guitars of “Optimistic Nihilistic”, something that is continued throughout the track.

The stressed-out vocals present through all of “Save Yourself A Lifetime” do not have a parallel anywhere else in music; while it may be easy to lump Isaac’s vocals in with those of Strike Anywhere and Rise Against, the comparison is not complete in any sense of the term. Burns Out Bright is not afraid to stretch a track out well over a traditional runtime; instead of winding down for the last few minutes of “Optimistic Nihilistic”, the band kicks it into overdrive and (pardon the pun) burns out bright. In much of the same way, it is an easy way out if a reviewer would say that “Replication Is The Highest Form of Replication” is influenced by Blink 182; the activist drums present during the track and the vocals may be reminiscent but the wide-open spaces created by the guitars is at odd with Mark and the Blink kids. It was really hard for Burns Out Bright to top themselves after the gold that was “Distance and Darkness”, but the band builds on that EP to create a full, robust disc that never disappoints.

Where there was a claim a few years back by the magazine that Burns Out Bright found themselves at the nexus of a more Brand New/Coheed type of sound, “Save Yourself A Lifetime” is much more couched in the emo stylings of the nineties than anything more current. Each track is an instant classic, and by the time that “Save Yourself A Lifetime” is done listeners will be floating on a cloud of guitar riffs and splashing drums. Burns Out Bright really hits their creative high when they take on the eighties’ incarnation of the Goo Goo Dolls with “Sincerely I”. One will be banging their head as they are smearing their mascara; Burns Out Bright has distilled twenty years of emo music in a fifty-minute tour de force that will make subsequent acts green with envy.

Top Tracks: Optimistic Nihilistic, Sincerely I

Rating: 9.0/10

Burns Out Bright – Save Yourself A Lifetime / 2006 Deep Elm / 10 Tracks / http://www.burnsoutbright.com / http://www.deepelm.com / Reviewed 13 March 2006

[JMcQ]

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