Will we ever see the end?
This - is - sempiternal!
Over and over, AGAIN AND AGAIN!
Bring Me the Horizon (often abbreviated as BMTH) is a five-piece rock band from Sheffield, Yorkshire that formed in 2004. The band's name is paraphrased from a line of dialogue spoken by Jack Sparrow in Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl ("Now... bring me that horizon").
BMTH started out as a deathcore band with a reliance on breakdowns, false-chord screaming, and riffs influenced by bands such as At the Gates. This sound is represented on their debut release, the grindcore-esque EP This Is What the Edge of Your Seat Was Made For. The only full-length work released in this phase of their career was their debut album Count Your Blessings, which brought them their first taste of popularity once the music video for lead single "Pray for Plagues" went viral.
Their next album, Suicide Season, marked a switch to a pure metalcore sound. This was inspired by the band's experience with extremely negative reactions to Count Your Blessings from "proper metalheads", and their subsequent decision that their follow-up would be the "make-or-break" moment for the band. The album's sound incorporated electronic and ambient elements alongside more melodic vocals, making for a slightly more accessible sound overall. This, along with the more mature songwriting on display, gained the album more popularity, as well as their first signature song of sorts in the track "Chelsea Smile".
Entering the 2010s, BMTH's releases would lean more into atmospherics and electronics, transitioning fully from their heavy roots into more alternative styles. They would incorporate symphonic arrangements and futuristic sound design (There Is a Hell...), influences from genres such as Post-Hardcore and Post-Rock (Sempiternal), and further elements from genres like Alternative Rock, Alternative Metal, Nu Metal and pop rock (That's the Spirit). While this trajectory was not without recurring controversy, it resulted in unprecedented levels of success for the band.
However, with their sixth album amo, released at the start of 2019, BMTH made their most unexpected move yet: releasing an album that more closely resembled straightforward pop music than anything they had released before, taking inspiration from genres as diverse as trance, hip-hop and electropop. Although this continued the band's commercial success (to the tune of their first two Grammy Award nominations), it was predictably quite divisive, outright alienating sections of their fanbase. To the band's credit, they welcomed the mixed reception with open arms; frontman Oliver Sykes likened it to the reception Suicide Season had upon release, and the album contained multiple tracks preemptively (and in somewhat tongue-in-cheek manner) addressing fans who would be mad at them.
Around the turn of the 2020s, BMTH continued experimenting with more types of electronica in the long-form release Music to Listen To..., and took the music world by surprise once again by utilizing their modern production styles to throw back to the heavier sounds of their early material (POST HUMAN: SURVIVAL HORROR).
Despite the fact that they've received a fair amount of backlash from many metal fans, each release has seen BMTH grow to new heights of popularity even with their routine stylistic shifts, and they are currently regarded as one of the biggest and most influential modern rock acts around.
- Oliver Sykes - lead vocals
- Lee Malia - lead guitar
- Matt Kean - bass guitar
- Matt Nicholls - drums, percussion
- Jordan Fish - keyboards, programming, vocals (2013-present)
- Curtis Ward - guitar, (2004-2009)
- Jona Weinhofen - rhythm guitar, keyboards, programming, vocals (2009-2013)
- 2004 - This Is What the Edge of Your Seat Was Made For (EP)
- 2006 - Count Your Blessings
- 2008 - Suicide Season
- 2009 - Suicide Season: Cut Up! (remix album)
- 2010 - There Is a Hell, Believe Me I've Seen It. There Is a Heaven, Let's Keep It a Secret.
- 2013 - Sempiternal
- 2015 - That's the Spirit
- 2019 - amo
- 2019 - Music to Listen to~Dance to~Blaze to~Pray to~Feed to~Sleep to~Talk to~Grind to~Trip to~Breathe to~Help to~Hurt to~Scroll to~Roll to~Love to~Hate to~Learn Too~Plot to~Play to~Be to~Feel to~Breed to~Sweat to~Dream to~Hide to~Live to~Die to~Go To (commercial releasenote )
- 2020 - POST HUMAN: SURVIVAL HORROR (EP)
Every scar will build my tropes:
- all lowercase letters: The title of their sixth album is stylized this way, and the same goes for nearly every song comprising it. note
- Anti-Love Song: "Traitors Never Play Hangman" and "Tell Slater Not to Wash His Dick".
- Arch-Enemy: Bullet for My Valentine, according to the magazine Rock Sound.
- Atomic F-Bomb: "Fuck" begins with, well, a loud shout of "let's FUCK!!!"
- Audience Participation Song: "Diamonds Aren't Forever" and "Anthem".
- Biblical Motifs: The Ten Plagues of Egypt on "Pray for Plagues".
- Blinding Bangs: Oli, though this applied mostly during the earlier stages of BMTH's career.
- Break-Up Song: Lots of 'em.
- Call-Back: "ouch", from amo, references "Follow You" (off That's the Spirit) in its one verse. It also may count as a Dark Reprise, as a fairly sweet song turns into a vicious Break Up Song."Follow You": So you can drag me through hell if it meant I could hold your handI will follow you 'cause I'm under your spell and you can throw me to the flames"ouch": I know I said I was under your spell, but this hex is on another levelAnd I know I said you could drag me through Hell, but I hoped you wouldnt fuck the Devil
- Canon Discontinuity: Oli Sykes once disowned This Is What the Edge of Your Seat Was Made For, although he later claimed that he was too drunk to think straight at the time.
- Careful with That Axe: The beginning of "Pray for Plagues". Also, "Chelsea Smile".
- Chewing the Scenery: Oli Sykes did this a lot on Count Your Blessings; he'd hold screams for so long that his growl would eventually diminish and revert back to his normal voice.
- Cluster F-Bomb: "(I Used to Make Out With) Medusa" has the line "why don't you just fuck yourself, you fucking whore?"
- "Fuck"... naturally...
- Continuity Nod:
- "Diamonds Aren't Forever" references older song "Rawwwrrr" and "Chelsea Smile" references "Pray for Plagues".
- "Crucify Me" also references "The Sadness Will Never End":TSWNE: So don't give up on me/It's not too late for us/And I'll save you from yourself/And I'll save you from yourself....Is there hope for us?/Can we make it out alive?CM: If we make it through the night, if I make it out alive/Lord have mercy and pray for the dead/And you say that you can save me...
- The outro to "Dear Diary," references "Pray for Plagues" with Sykes erupting into a Metal Scream. The bout of Corpsing that breaks the scream might also count as them laughing at the darkly ironic connection between that song's title and the COVID-19 Pandemic, one of the major inspirations for POST HUMAN.
- Covers Always Lie: The covers for The Edge of Your Seat... and Count Your Blessings are intentional examples.
- Cover Version: The band has covered "Eyeless" by Slipknot.
- Dead Man's Hand: "Alligator Blood" contains a reference to it.
- Deathcore: Up until Suicide Season.
- Despair Event Horizon: "Suicide Season" and "Blessed with a Curse" cross it.
- Pretty much every song on Sempiternal crosses it.
- The Dog Bites Back: The premise of "Throne".So you can throw me to the wolves
Tomorrow I will come back
Leader of the whole pack
- Double-Meaning Title: amo has a triple meaning title - as Portuguese for "I love", as European Portuguese for "master", and as a homophone for "ammo" (as in ammunition).
- Drugs Are Bad: Oliver revealed at the Alternative Press Music Awards of 2014 that he had faced an addiction to ketamine. This later became the main thematic in some songs in That's the Spirit, especially "Avalanche", although the band subtly talked about it earlier on in songs such as "It Never Ends" or "Go to Hell, for Heaven's Sake".
- Early Installment Weirdness: The band's gradual Genre Shift from abrasive Deathcore to polished Metalcore and finally Alternative Rock (increasingly taking on an eclectic range of secondary influences during the latter two stages) has become so drastic that listening to the band's raw, decidedly sloppy debut Deathcore EP in light of their recent output essentially invokes this.
- Emo Teen: The band's lyrics (and hair) used to invoke this.
- Epic Rocking: "Suicide Season".
- Their second EP consists mainly of this. Only one track lasts less than 5 minutes, while three are over 10 minutes. It's eight songs that comprise a 75-minute recording.
- Genre Roulette: And how! Can you name another artist that has played deathcore, only to later start performing electropop? There's a laundry list of genres they've covered over the years, especially on their two most recent releases That's the Spirit and amo. Even during their deathcore days, they would have a randomly-placed Post-Rock song.
- Genre Shift: From Deathcore to Metalcore, then from metalcore to Alternative Rock.
- Gorn: The artwork for Suicide Season.
- The video for "Follow You" takes this Up to Eleven.
- Gratuitous French: "ouch" opens with the line "Tu as tué mon bébé" (you killed my baby). Justified, as the song is about Oli's divorce (his now ex-wife cheated on him with a French tattoo artist).
- Hate Plague: The aforementioned video for "Follow You", where almost everyone the boy comes across is gleefully trying to kill each other.
- "I Hate" Song:
- "True Friends" rants about a friend's betrayal.
- "Go to Hell, for Heaven's Sake" is an angry song about someone the singer dislikes.
- Important Haircut: Oli cut his hair short in 2018, following his divorce and signifying the band's switch to a more pop-driven sound that started with That's the Spirit and continued in amo.
- Improv: "Off the Heezay" begins with the vocalist screaming "AWESOME FOURSOME!!!"
- Industrial Metal: POST HUMAN: SURVIVAL HORROR is a foray into the genre, particularly in songs like "Obey", "Parasite Eve", "Kingslayer" and "Ludens". The EP's sound direction was largely inspired by Sykes playing through DOOM Eternal, which led to the band getting Mick Gordon on board for production.
- Intercourse with You: "Fuck", of course.
- Last Note Nightmare: The ending of "heavy metal" garnered attention for being the heaviest the band had been in years since going alternative, featuring Oli screaming "NO, THIS AIN'T HEAVY METAL!" followed by a guttural growl.
- Lighter and Softer: That's the Spirit is notably much lighter in sound than their previous material, due to them abandoning metalcore and incorporating alternative elements. Even the heaviest songs ("Happy Song" and "True Friends") aren't as heavy as their music from before.
- Long Title:
- "No Need for Introductions, I've Read About Girls Like You on the Back of Toilet Doors".
- The EP This Is What the Edge of Your Seat Was Made For also qualifies.
- Music to Listen to~Dance to~Blaze to~Pray to~Feed to~Sleep to~Talk to~Grind to~Trip to~Breathe to~Help to~Hurt to~Scroll to~Roll to~Love to~Hate to~Learn Too~Plot to~Play to~Be to~Feel to~Breed to~Sweat to~Dream to~Hide to~Live to~Die to~Go To certainly qualifies.
- As does "One Day the Only Butterflies Left Will Be in Your Chest as You March Towards Your Death".
- Loudness War: Suicide Season and There Is a Hell.... Just listen to the drum intro of "Anthem".
- Lyrical Dissonance:
- Whenever the band does "romantic" subject matter, like on "Tell Slater Not to Wash His Dick" and "Off the Heezay". Both are punishing deathcore songs, but the former is about genuinely missing your loved one while away while the latter is about an admittedly brutal breakup.
- "Oh No" is a very cheerful and danceable Pop Rock song ... that happens to be about Oli's struggles with Drug abuse.
- Metalcore: Was one of the leading players until they completely abandoned it with That's the Spirit.
- Metal Scream: Oliver used to do Type 3's and 1's in the early days, however, due to damage to his vocal chords, he dialed down the unclean vocals exponentially.
- Minimalistic Cover Art: That's the Spirit, which is just the album name in grey on a black cover; the cover art for the digital/streaming version, which shows the outline of an umbrella with raindrops, also counts. amo took it a step further in a similar fashion to Yeezus with no cover aside from a yellow strip with the album name on the left, covering half of the CD and painted hearts on the case.
- Mood Whiplash: "No Need for Introductions, I've Read About Girls Like You on the Back of Toilet Doors" starts as a classy jazz-esque tune, only to abruptly transform into one of the heaviest songs they've ever made, complete with a Scare Chord.
- My God, What Have I Done?: "Go to Hell, for Heaven's Sake" sounds like a vicious "The Reason You Suck" Speech on paper, but Sykes himself said that the lyrics were aimed at himself and how he foolishly almost destroyed his life piece by piece thanks to his drug abuse.
- New Sound Album: Suicide Season and Sempiternal.
- Up to Eleven with That's the Spirit, which completely abandons the Metalcore elements and goes full blown indie/alternative/ and even some Post-Rock and Nu Metal.
- amo looks like it was made on a dare on how many new sounds you can put into a single album, displaying everything you can imagine from hard rock and nu metal to electropop and symphonic compositions.
- POST HUMAN: SURVIVAL HORROR is less eclectic than amo, with most of the songs being a mix of Industrial Metal and Nu Metal.
- Non-Appearing Title: Half of their song titles, at least.
- Not Christian Rock: Anytime Oli's lyrics as well as the overall imagery invoke Christian references.
- Additionally, they are a British band; unlike their American counterparts, young Brits are overwhelmingly secular.
- Nu Metal: They've been experimental with this genre on some songs since That's the Spirit. Notable examples include "Happy Song," "Wonderful Life" and "Teardrops".
- Oh, Crap!: In the "Alligator Blood" video, when Oli gets the "Death" card.
- Oop North: Considering they hail from Sheffield, they definitely count.
- Our Product Sucks:
- The late 2015 internet advertising for one of their tours specified that it was not an announcement, but "a warning".
- The advertising for their 2016 Australian tour wasn't any better.
- Perishing Alt-Rock Voice: Oli switches to this style on That's the Spirit.
- Precision F-Strike: "Tell Slater Not to Wash His Dick", "For Stevie Wonder's Eyes Only", "Chelsea Smile" and "Sleep with One Eye Open".
- Rated G for Gangsta: They've lightened up their originally vulgar and hedonistic public image since their Genre Shift to Metalcore.
- Rearrange the Song: A majority of Music to Listen To... was conceived of during the sessions for amo. As a result, several of its songs reference or sample songs from amo; "Steal Something." contains elements of "i apologise if you feel something", "¿" interpolates lyrics from "in the dark", and "why you gotta kick me when i'm down?" samples portions of "A Devastating Liberation".
- Refuge in Audacity: They were pretty much fueled by this in their early years.
- Singing "Antivist" with a choir and an orchestra in a royal theater was considered an act of tremendous audacity.
- Religion Rant Song: "The House of Wolves", "Crooked Young" and "MANTRA" are all Type 2's; "Blasphemy" is more of a Type 3.
- Scary Musician, Harmless Music: Inverted.
- Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll: "Football Season Is Over" and "A Lot Like Vegas".
- Sir Swears-a-Lot: Oliver is fond of saying the word "fuck" in about every other sentence.
- The band's name is a Shout Out to the last line in Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl.
- The song title "Who Wants Flowers When You're Dead? Nobody." is a Shout Out to J. D. Salinger's novel The Catcher in the Rye.
- The song title "Tell Slater Not to Wash His Dick" is a Shout Out to sickanimation.com's The Secret League of Legionaires Pt. 2.
- A song from their album Count Your Blessings is called "For Stevie Wonder's Eyes Only".
- The song "It Was Written in Blood" contains almost direct quotes from the suicide note left by the famous Russian poet Sergei Yesenin, who wrote the note in his own blood.
- The song "Football Season Is Over" might be named after the suicide note left by the famous Gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson.
- The song title "The Sadness Will Never End" paraphrases Vincent van Gogh's last words, "The sadness will last forever."
- The lyrics to "Suicide Season" are heavily influenced by the funeral poem If Tears Could Build a Sentence.
- Predator and Chewbacca from Star Wars appear in the video for "The Comedown".
- The video for "The Sadness Will Never End" is based on the movie Let the Right One In.
- The song "Shadow Moses" is a reference to Metal Gear, and even samples the song "The Best Is Yet to Come" from Metal Gear Solid.
- POST HUMAN: SURVIVAL HORROR is filled to the brim with these: one of the songs is titled "Parasite Eve", "Dear Diary,"'s lyrics paraphrase the Keeper's Diary from Resident Evil and "Ludens" is named after the logo of Kojima Productions.
- Sliding Scale of Silliness vs. Seriousness: While their music tends to be quite serious, their music videos do have a certain amount of silliness.
- Soprano and Gravel: Oli and Lights when they sing together on "Don't Go" and "Crucify Me"
- Despite mostly switching to clean vocals for That's the Spirit, Oli still lets a scream slip on a few songs.
- Spoken Word in Music
- Subdued Section: The ambient sections on "Chelsea Smile" and "Suicide Season". There Is a Hell... has these on almost every song.
- Surprisingly Gentle Song: "Fifteen Fathoms, Counting", if instrumentals count. Also "Deathbeds".
- Studio Chatter: At the end of "Rawwwrrr" and "Football Season Is Over".
- Take That!:
- "No Need for Introductions..." is a Take That at a girl who claimed to have been assaulted and pissed on by the band, getting the band into legal trouble and putting a black mark on their reputation.
- "heavy metal" is one towards the part of the fandom that never ceased pissing and moaning about how BMTH moved away from their aggressive roots.
- "MANTRA" seems to be a rant towards organized religions, if the chorus is any indicator.
- Textless Album Cover: There Is a Hell..., Sempiternal, the digital version of That's the Spirit, Music to Listen to..., and POST HUMAN: SURVIVAL HORROR all qualify.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: "True Friends", which also doubles as a Break-Up Song. The pre-chorus verse is particularly scathing.
- This Is for Emphasis, Bitch!: "For Stevie Wonder's Eyes Only".
- This Is a Song: "Anthem".
- Title Drop: They drop the band's name in "RE: They Have No Reflections".Do not change the subjectLet's go change the subjectBring me the horizonBring me the horizonNow
- Trope Codifier: for Emo-looking guys playing Deathcore. Before Bring Me the Horizon, the asymmetric-fringed crowd were only ever seen in emo bands, and skinny, well-groomed teens playing brutal metalcore was quite a shock to the system back in 2005-2006, when their EP started making the rounds, especially since this was before metalcore was paid attention to outside of metal crowds in their native Britain.
- More recently, they have become this for bands playing Metalcore with ambient electronica and symphonic influences.
- A Wild Rapper Appears!: Rahzel (ex-The Roots) has a guest spot on "heavy metal". Complete with beatboxing!
- Word Salad Lyrics: "Pray for Plagues", if going from talking about a Hard-Drinking Party Girl to the Ten Plagues of Egypt is anything to write home about. Sykes himself came forward saying that the song's lyrics don't have a particular meaning.
- Zombie Apocalypse: "Dear Diary," describes this happening. The writer in question is complaining about a dog constantly barking at him and becoming itchy and fading in and out, revealing hints of him becoming a zombie after somebody bit him earlier.