Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Better Left Unsaid-Better Left Unsaid

Epochal Artists Records/Capital Music Group

This self-titled release makes album number three for Modesto, CA-based Better Left Unsaid. As a piece of interest I had requested this release and, for what it's worth, had expected "melodic metal" out of this California-based act. At least that was what came (by way of explanation) with the introduction e-mail. Color me blood-red surprised then when what came whipping out of my speakers was not so much Dokken or Stryper like melodic metal but rather a band melodic-infused technical thrash act influenced by the likes of Pantera, Devildriver, Testament, Machine Head, Iron Maiden, Messhugah and All That Remains! That just goes to show that you never know what you're going to get when you go into things somewhat blind! Lead by vocalist Adam Raffety, whose style is rough in a "Man, now that is METAL!" kind of way, Better Left Unsaid (or BLU for short) has been going full-force since forming in 2003. It would take a few years though for the whole world to take notice of their sick take on metal. That happened in 2008 when their single "Testify", which came from their national-debut album "The Fight Within", ended up on MTV's Headbangers Ball. That video single helped give the group more exposure which BLU has continued to build on with each new gig and each new album. Speaking of gigs, BLU is what you could call a workhorse metal act. Since 2008 they have played an average of 150 live shows a year and have shared the stage with everyone from Killswitch Engage to Hed P.E. Not too shabby at all right? Of course all of that brings us right back around to this self-titled release which, right from the opening notes, has a take-no-prisoners and take-no-shit outlook! Everything from the songwriting to the technical delivery screams heavy metal perfection while the production, courtesy of Adam Ruppel, is perfectly suited for an album like this. Everything gels together nicely whether it's the thrash-attack lead guitar work born of bands like Testament and Exodus or the back-end heavy-ass groove that BLU lays down that would, all things being equal and all, make Pantera and Exhorder stand up and take notice! With all of that (and much more!) going on this makes for one bruiser of an album. Given all of that it's quite obvious that this LP comes highly recommended!


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