Between The Buried And Me is a name that has earned a lot of respect in the metal community over the years. With their out of the box thinking and high level musicianship it’s no wonder why this North Carolina Progressive Metal act has acquired quite a following. After the word spread that there would be a direct follow up to the 2011 EP “The Parallax: Hypersleep Dialogues”, anticipation was high. Especially when it was announced that it would be a full length studio record as opposed to another EP. The band has been hyping the release for awhile and “The Parallax II: Future Sequence” has presently arrived. But does it live up to the hype and is it worth your time?
The answer to both questions is…. yes! Are you surprised? I’m Not. Between The Buried And Me earned their pedigree by writing music like this. Very complex, strange, and interesting “The Parallax II: Future Sequence” is an excellent addition to any prog-heads music catalog. It delivers everything the original “Parallax” promised and some. There is definitely an ambitious sci-fi epic theme here and BTBAM pulls it off like the pros they are. Expect several huge, cinematic moments.
I expected to hear a lot of things on this album, but I didn’t expect it to open with acoustic guitars. You got me again BTBAM… But that’s the least of the surprises you can expect on this album. As usual, these guys really don’t slack on originality, sometimes spanning into the bizarre. Listen and you’ll see what I mean. “Goodbye To Everything” leads brilliantly into the first full track and single of the record, “Astral Body”. The band released an incredible music video for this incredible song not too long ago. You can watch/listen to it above! Clocking in at just over 10 minutes, “Lay Your Ghosts To Rest” is one of the many epics to be found on “The Parallax II”. Others include “Extremophile Elite”, “Telos”, “Melting City”, and “Silent Flight Parliament”. All of which are excellent and original to boot. “Telos” and “Melting City” especially… holy shit. Lengthy epics are nothing new for this band as you can find several across their discography. There are also several much shorter, great tracks strewn between. Stand outs amongst these are “Astral Body” yet again, “Parallax” leading into “Black Box”, and “Bloom”.
As I hinted before, there are some “What the fuck?” moments to be found on this record, or any BTBAM record really. Objectively, these may be off putting to some listeners. For example, the band goes into a surfer style boogey among other weirdness in the last track I mentioned, “Bloom”, which caught me completely off guard. I personally enjoy these strange moments, others may not. That’s really my only criticism of this record, even if I expected it. “The Parallax II” is an awesome, well constructed piece of metal art \m/
Overall, yeah, this record kicks ass. And it’s an impressive 72 and a half minute ass kicking. “The Parallax II: Future Sequence” is recommended to all the prog nerds out there or any metal heads who enjoy heaps of creativity. You can sample the album right here, right now with the videos above! And if you like it, buy it! But we’re sorry to say the space suits are no longer available…