Where does one even start with this piece? There is so much to cover in such a short amount of space, yet Jordan Fish and Lee Malia from Bring Me The Horizon had sooo much to share on upon the release of their latest masterpiece POST HUMAN: SURVIVAL HORROR (our review here). As the Sheffield band were waking up around 9am local time, we here in Australia had been thrashing the new record all day, so by the time 7pm rolled around for my interview with the lads, there was plenty of ground to cover.
Firstly, the album’s opening track saw BMTH head down the dark and scary (for some) path into thrash metal territory, with a face-melting solo that’ll certainly please even the harshest of critic, and as it turns out, the Slayer inspired riff was a combined effort from both Fish and Malia who threw ideas back and forth to get it right:
“I can’t actually remember [where the inspiration came from]” explains Jordan, “the only thing I remember about that is the solo, we had an idea of what we wanted and I don’t even know much about that kind of music, so I just recorded myself going like [makes tongue flicking sounds] down a mic, and then actually did it with my distortion on and I sent it to Lee and I was like ‘oh, should we do something like this?’ and he’s like ‘yeah, I know what that is… I can do that exact thing’ and he sent it back and it was exactly what’s on the record…”
“Yeah I just went as Slayer as possible for me, you know what I mean…” Lee Malia on his shredding technique for ‘Dear Diary,’
But don’t expect the boys to fill the void left by Slayer (who called it a day in December 2019) by releasing an album full of thrash metal inspired riffs and licks, as they shut that idea down pretty quickly when I quizzed them about what the possibility was on future releases:
“Unlikely I would say” Jordan stated before laughing, with Lee adding “Yeah, probably not.” However, they didn’t rule out the idea of dabbling with the idea again down the track…
“I think dabble is probably enough for us” – Jordan Fish on BMTH’s future in thrash metal
But it’s that magical word, dabble, which has really set Bring Me The Horizon up for success over the past decade. Yes, we’ve seen a dramatic change of style from their earlier deathcore days, all the way through albums like Suicide Season, There Is A Hell…, Sempiternal, That’s The Spirit and amo; but one thing everyone needs to understand and listen out for, is the band’s progression as musicians from those early years, to the now twice Grammy-nominated rock icons they’ve fast become!
And with their heightened success and popularity, comes the opportunity to expand their musical landscape by collaborating with artists who would NEVER have been a possibility had they continued on with those early deathcore roots. PH: SH saw the band team up with Nova Twins, Yungblud, BABYMETAL and Evanescence‘s Amy Lee who was a “dream come true” idea for Jordan:
“Once you send them the track and stuff and you’re waiting to hear back from them, you start to become a bit obsessed with the idea and then it’s like ‘aww what if they come back and say no?’ and then you really want it” explains Fish.
“Amy Lee was like one of those throwaway suggestions like ‘that might be cool’ and then over time it became ‘if she doesn’t do it, then… it feels like the stake of the whole record depends on if they come back and do it or not and it was the same with BABYMETAL. We had that song [Kingslayer] and it was like ‘BABYMETAL would be cool’ and then once the stuff had gone to them, then we’re just like ‘If we pull this off and BABYMETAL are on it… this song’s gonna be so fucking sick!”
“They’re definitely one of them bands we can relate to in a way… They mix a lot of different styles, they’re not your standard band…” Jordan Fish on BMTH’s relationship with BABYMETAL.
But as it turns out, ‘Kingslayer‘ may have sounded a whole lot different had the band gone with the first recording BABYMETAL sent back to them:
“They came back with an English verse and Oli [Sykes] just replied to them ‘is there any chance you can do something Japanese?’ and they were like ‘Really?’ and [he] just thought it’d be cool if the [track] was in their actual language”
We couldn’t agree with the guys more. After following BABYMETAL for a few years now, we can safely say some of their better material has been the albums/singles which features the girls singing in Japanese, more so than their most recent releases which feature more English songs than their earlier beginnings.
Collectively BMTH‘s new release has won over fans (young and old) around the world with the exception of one tiny little factor that I just had to get to the bottom of (mainly to shut all of you lot in the UNFD Social Club up) and that was why the band called POST HUMAN: SURVIVAL HORROR an EP rather than a full-length nine-track album? As it turns out, the decision was an easy one that we all should have seen coming:
“Well, we initially intended [for] it to be shorter to be fair” Jordan revealed. “I didn’t think it was going to be nine tracks. I guess EP, we probably used the wrong terminology in the first place, I don’t think we should have maybe said EP so, it’s four records really (if you want to think of it like that) of any length, that was the idea.
If we wanted to drop a four-track record and that felt right then we’d do that… But yeah this one’s ended up (to be fair) being an album really isn’t it, I guess!”
“It’s an album if you take away the shit songs like on a normal album…” Jordan Fish on POST HUMAN: SURVIVAL HORROR’s EP vs Album theory.
There are no shit songs here, some may take a little longer to resonate with you though, but at the end of the day Bring Me The Horizon are at the top of their game. Admired by their ever-growing fanbase, an inspiration for their musical peers and slowly but surely, taking the wheel of their own pirate ship and setting sail on their next successful musical venture (amidst a global pandemic mind you). This new EP/Album is the first of four in a series and we for one cannot wait to see/hear what the guys do next!
Words by Paul ‘Browny’ Brown @brownypaul
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POST HUMAN: SURVIVAL HORROR is out now via Sony Music Australia
Bring Me The Horizon POST HUMAN: SURVIVAL HORROR tracklisting
1. Dear Diary,
2. Parasite Eve
4. Obey feat. Yungblud
5. Itch For The Cure (When Will We Be Free)
6. Kingslayer feat BABYMETAL
7. 1×1 feat. Nova Twins
9. One Day The Only Butterflies Left Will Be In Your Chest As You March Towards Your Death feat. Amy Lee