Friday, February 25, 2011

Bayside - Killing Time Review

When it comes to longevity in the music industry, it's hard to find a band today that have stuck together through the years, and more importantly, haven't altered their sound from record to record. And with the release of Bayside's Killing Time, it's clear that the Long Island outfit stand as one of the few bands that can actually accomplish this.

The 10-track album, released on Wind-Up Records, stands as both a throwback to Bayside's earliest work, and a step toward maturing their sound. Killing Time opens up with "Already Gone", a track that will immediately satisfy fans of the band's 2008 release, Shudder. The opener picks up where Shudder left off, but with enough flair and hard-rock genius to set a tone of anger and emotion that remains present through the other nine tracks.

For fans of Bayside's earlier work, including Sirens and Condolences and their self-titled effort, they need to look no further than songs like "The Wrong Way" and the album's title track. Both tracks prove to be memorably intense and in-your-face thanks to the driving bass lines of Nick Ghanbarian and the screaming lead guitar riffs of Jack O'Shea.

Lead singer Anthony Raneri's lyrics have a way of sticking around once you hear them. Again, as with almost every other Bayside record, Raneri can write about tragedy and heartache without sobbing or feeling sorry for himself. The emotion he copes with on Killing Time are met with a passion and anger that will undoubtedly have crowds exploding toward the stage during live shows.

But the record does have it's slower side, too. The one thing about Bayside is they always leave a little space for something acoustic on each record. This record's unplugged tune comes in the form of "On Love, On Life" - a somewhat depressing account of love lost. "I can't let it bother me / if fact and fate just can't agree / on love, on life. / Can we just stop taking ourselves so seriously?"

All in all, Killing Time moves in a way no other Bayside record has. While it finds a nice mix of fast and slow, anger and aggression, it's the fluidity and consistency each song has that makes the album stand out. No one song is left behind. Each part works in perfect harmony with the last. Nothing is left out, and nothing seems overdone.

Perhaps the real sell for this album is that fine balance between old and new. You can hear Shudder in this record, but it's never too much. You can also hear traces of songs like, "Masterpiece" and "Montauk" riddled through the track listing. But again, it's never too much.

It seems that Bayside have found their stride. While Shudder represented a leap toward maturity, which was ultimately too much, Killing Time has found that balance they were looking for two years ago. All the elements of this band that fans know and love are represented equally. With nothing left out and no one left behind, Bayside have covered their ground nicely.

Armed with Killing Time, look for these guys to take what's left of the scene by storm.

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