Bring Me The Horizon (BMTH) are a British rock band from Sheffield. They were formed in 2004 and are carried by lead singer and poster boy Oliver (Oli) Skyes. Through the years, just like many bands some of their members have come and gone, but 5 members still stand and continue the journey. After following them for many years it has been very obvious that their music style has evolved in numerous ways. They have gone through multiple ups and downs during their journey, including a few controversial events. It is safe to say that they are one of my favourite artists of all time. However, I have only listened to them since 2014 so that means there are 10 years of their music that I have never experienced in real time. I find it intriguing to explore artists, and it was only natural of me to venture into the past and see where they started from.
When I first tell people that I listen to BMTH, I generally get comments such as “oh so you’re an emo then?”, or “you really like that screaming stuff?”. As I began to like them, the first album I listened to was ‘Sempiternal’ from 2014, and so this was the basis for the image that I had of the band. I then decided to listen to their debut album, ‘Count Your Blessings’, where I definitely understood reasoning behind the links between liking the band and being an “emo”. Of the bat their original style lay within the realms of deathcore, and that in itself sounds a bit frightening.
Their music from 2006 to 2010 is so raw and rough, and it was from here that they created their fanbase who grew to love them as a band. In 2014, after Sykes came out of rehab for an addiction to drugs, he decided it was the time to start to introduce a more relaxed, singing style. It could have been seen as a predictable move considering the potential damage to his vocal cords from the past years.
This resulted in a bit of backlash after they released their 2015 album ‘That’s the Spirit’, and some fans were angry that they had dropped the music style that made them who they were. It did contradict the image that they had constructed over the past 10 years but in my opinion, it did no harm. I found this genre change a clever move and was impressed that they balanced musicality whilst writing lyrics with themes that still stuck with their prior image.
BMTH took a 4-year break without releasing any music, but this didn’t stop them making the news. It was well known that there had been some drama between them and the band Coldplay over an accusation that they copied BMTH’s artwork from ‘Sempiternal’. When you look at them both, there are similarities, but both are also completely different in their own way. At the NME awards in 2016, Oli Sykes decided to jump on the table of Chris Martin's and trash it whilst singing. I wouldn’t call it revenge, per se, but you can see why people might call it something of the sort.
Later down the line in 2019 they released the album ‘Amo’, which is my favourite to date, and they used this to send out cleverly crafted messages. The song ‘Heavy Metal’ stands out amongst the crowd for its lyrics alone.
'Cause a kid on the 'gram in a Black Dahlia tank
Says it ain't heavy metal
(And that's alright, that's alright)
Using their music to spread the message that they don’t care about what people say about them, whilst also giving the song traits of what those fans craved, is genius. After the 2015 album, the band came back with another new style that drew on their original style, the 2015 album, and the criticism to excel. It was this very album that gave the band 2 Grammy nominations for ‘Best Rock Song’ and ‘Best Rock Album’. Unfortunately, this revival lasted a short time because whilst on the road promoting their album in 2019, Sykes broke the news that they were cancelling the rest of their American tour. He had ruptured his right vocal cord and understandably wanted to prevent permanent damage.
Their music style has been influenced a lot by things like electronica and progressive rock, things that are very evident in their latest album ‘Posthuman: Survival Horror’. In my eyes this is their most creative album that involves multiple collaborations with a wide range of artists. There was an unusual instance on the song ‘One Day The Only Butterflies Left Will Be In Your Chest As You March To Your Death’, where they joined forces with Amy Lee. Lee is the frontwoman for the acclaimed band Evanescence. I guess it's a bit of an odd pairing considering BMTH were almost sued by her in 2019. It became known that Amy was a fan of BMTH, so they decided to work together. The idea of having the sound of Evanescence in a song, most definitely caused a buzz within the fanbase.
They’ve experimented with genres and subgenres throughout their career, and it has definitely made them who they are today. With their broad and unique style, Oli and the band will always remain one of my favourite artists. I recently bought tickets to go to their concert in The O2 Arena, and if all goes to plan, I will be fortunate enough to experience their music live for the first time!