Originally written by Gregory Bradley.
Burst bursts onto the scene with their first full length album entitled Prey on Life. Now here’s a band that’s difficult to classify. I heard about two seconds and immediately my mind went to hardcore, then I heard keyboards, a lot of bass, and even some acoustic guitar, which left me bewildered as to how to genre-ize them. The best way I can think of, is to call them the Opeth of younger music crowd. They sound very little like Opeth, but they defy classification and they meld genres in the same way as Opeth does. It’s quite impressive. I must say right off the bat that this album has some pretty terrible production. Everything is unfortunately extremely muddled, which is quite a shame due to the fact that there’s some excellent songs and intricacies that you have to search that much harder for. As for the intricacies, my god there are so many. I think they use pretty much every guitar tone available, and not just for the sake of using weird noises. They actually find a way to tie every different sound texture and melody into the song. “The Foe Sublime” has a great mid-section which reminds me of a more melancholy The Great Deceiver song, then close to the end it gets heavy, only to completely mellow out before finishing. Talk about interesting song structures! Every song is great by itself, but when coupled together as a whole, they make for one hell of an album. There really are no words to truly describe them, you have to hear it for yourself. While not perfect, it’s an excellent start. I’m gonna call this band “Opeth Abridged”. They manage to bring enough complexity and freshness into their songs as Opeth does, but they do it in about half the time, without repeating riffs over and over for minutes at a time. Prey on Life has just about everything one could want, from mellow interludes to surprising change-ups to killer melodies. They even throw in the occasional hardcore breakdown. With better production, this one could’ve been one of the best of the year. I look forward to their next album, hopefully the production improves and the songwriting stays top-notch, because Burst could easily be destined for greatness.