Billy Talent: Afraid Of Heights

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Billy Talent are one of those bands you only hear of when you see a long queue of young people outside a gig and wonder who the big draw is.

We had them pegged as punk, albeit the grungier end, but we’re guessing that loyal fanbase is getting older and Billy Talent see the need to move on.

This new album is in the realms of heavier/stadium rock and works pretty well.

We played their greatest hits as a reference and while this is perhaps not as fast or sharp, they’ve still got an angry edge and there are some good moments. They seem to be trying to keep the fans happy with a mix of old and new, plus wit and anger.

Big Red Gun is a good opener; not the best but melodic, loud and functional. Track two, Afraid of Heights is much better, with an almost proggy range of structural changes but a nice bridge and catchy chorus. The aggressive, jerky Ghost Ship of Cannibal Rats is good but definitely more rock than punk — it reminded us of Disturbed (on a good day). The Offspring-like Louder Than The DJ is one of the album’s more entertaining songs, probably destined to be an encore complete with crowd sing-along.

About jerobear

Weekly newspaper editor in Cheshire, England. I blog my editorials and the CDs I write about. I play drums, drink coffee, play music, meditate. I hate filling in forms.

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