Open The Pit!!
Top 10 Breakdowns of the early 00's, A Social History of the Drum Kit, Gift Shop (by Closer) transcribed
Hey, hey, hey! I hope you all enjoyed the last issue, which focused on punk n’ drums (If you missed it, you can find it here). This issue (and following issues) will be a bit more concise, but not any less informative. I’m trying this new thing where I don’t wear myself out on the projects I’m working on (weird right?). I’ve been teaching myself about recording/mixing music, my band (Awful Din) is deep into the process of writing our first full length album, and I’m working on some exciting new material with my partner, Katie (we recently went into the studio to record a new song). I’m also focusing on making music for the sake of making it (rather than trying to make “something” out of it), so expect to see more from me in the future! With all that being said, the last drumZine issue got me thinking about my introduction to heavy music. I want to spend some time in memory lane and explore the music that ignited my love for hard hitting drums.
BUT FIRST, A SICK BOOK REC.
Kick It: A Social History of the Drum Kit (by: Matt Brennan)
This book does a great job at tracing the impact of the drum kit, and drummers, in popular music. It’s an anthropological study of drums; What more could you ask for? It gave me a new appreciation of the individual pieces of my kit AND left me with some pithy/new facts: Next time your guitar player cracks a drummer joke, remind them that the founder of Marshall (the guitar amp company) is a drummer. So, you wouldn’t be able to hear their sick riffs without drummers behind the scenes.
The first time I ever moshed and crowd surfed was at Warped Tour (I think 2011?) and it was during Bring Me The Horizon’s set. When they played “Shadow Moses,” I knew I was ready. I turned to my friend Jimmy and said “I want to get up there!” Within seconds, he and a stranger were lifting me above the crowd and, before I knew it, I was soaring above the crowd and singing along at the top of my lungs. Just as he introduced me to my first crowd surfing experience, he’s been the one to introduce me to all the good heavy bands to listen to over the years. So, I’m very excited to have him on the drumZine, talking about his favorite breakdowns of the early 2000’s.
Top 10 Screamo Breakdowns (2000-2009)
By Jimmy Macholl
Personally, I always used the term “screamo” as a very inclusive term. Does it include screaming vocals in the music? Distorted guitars? Emo lyric material? It’s all screamo to me. With that being said, I realize that the list I’ve made is probably about to piss off some screamo purists out there, so all I have to say to them is, RAWR XD (sorry lol). When I say that these are the best breakdowns of the 2000s, I mean these are my personal favorites. This isn’t about searching for the heaviest, the most brutal, or even the most objectively good breakdowns. These are the ones that have stuck with me over time; breakdowns that I still hold dear to my heart. Breakdowns were there for us when no one else was. So let's straighten our hair to a burnt crisp, throw on our old band tees, skinny jeans, studded belts, and skater shoes with those giant padded tongues as we reminisce on some juicy breakdowns by some incredibly talented artists. All songs on the list include the time where the breakdown is in the song (based on their tracks on Spotify, NOT their music videos), and I also included build ups to breakdowns where applicable for songs that benefit from them.
10. Heroes Get Remembered, Legends Never Die
By: Four Year Strong
Album: Rise Or Die Trying (2007)
Four Year Strong’s music is well known for being fast paced, energetic, riffing insanity with two powerhouse vocalists that compliment each other very well. It feels weird putting a pop punk/easycore band in this list, but the breakdown in this song is so good that it would be a sin for me not to include it. With that being said, the bridge of this song (right before the breakdown) is what REALLY sends this song to another level. In the music video you can literally see people jumping off the balcony of The Palladium into the crowd when the breakdown hits. “Sad enough to say that alone I can barely light a match, but together we can burn this place down.”
9. Bug Parade
By: Polar Bear Club
Album: Sometimes Things Just Disappear (2008)
PBC were easily one of the most underrated bands in the scene. Heck, I even slept on them for a while, but I forgive myself; at least I was listening to them while they were still together (PBC pls come back to us I love you <3). Have you ever related to a song so deeply that the lyrics are literally describing what’s going on in your head in that exact moment? Bug Parade was there for me on my late night drives doing everything I could to make a long distance relationship work. This song perfectly emulates what it was like for me, and when the breakdown hits, it goes straight to your soul. “Minutes away, but miles apart,” haunts the back of your mind as this breakdown fades into silence.
8. Wake Up
By: Suicide Silence
Album: No Time To Bleed (2009)
Now we’re getting into some brutal breakdown territory! Suicide Silence was always there for me when life felt like too much to bear. Perhaps the traumatic material in the music made my life feel less shitty. This song is about trying to get your friend to wake up from an overdose. If there’s a song out there to talk you down from taking another dose, it’s this one. The breakdown conveys the emotions of terror, panic, and stress perfectly.
7. The Eleventh Hour
By: August Burns Red
Album: Messengers (2007)
(1:29-1:52, 2:21-3:02, 3:22-4:06)
Ah yes, remember Christian metalcore? That shit was alive and well in this decade. August Burns Red are a bunch of clean cut lookin’ dudes that your mom eventually let you listen to in front of her after having to explain to her multiple times that this music is actually the opposite of what she called “devil music.” If you also came from a devout Christian household, I’m sure you can relate. The Eleventh Hour, as far as I’m concerned, has THREE breakdowns in it. This song would basically keep you in the pit for the entire song. Ain’t nobody got the energy for that! Except for ABR, of course.
6. The Comedown
By: Bring Me The Horizon
Album: Suicide Season (2008)
The music video to this song was a vibe that hung over my head throughout the remainder of my days of being a little scene-bean. This music video, and also that one video of koi fish losing their shit to BMTH’s Diamonds Aren’t Forever...but anyways, the breakdown in The Comedown deserves to be here because, well, it fuckin’ slaps! And I still lose my shit when the band stops and Ollie Sykes screams, “I’D RATHER LIVE, THAN LIVE FOREEEVERRRR!”
5. Rosemary Had an Accident
By: The Devil Wears Prada
Album: Dear Love: A Beautiful Discord (2006)
TDWP were the first screamo band that I fell in love with. That love lasted all the way up till halfway through college. And while I understand that this song isn’t very well known, I don’t really care. Listen to this breakdown and tell me that it’s NOT the best breakdown from this band pre-2010, I dare you. The breakdown of this song has a very apocalyptic vibe from it, complemented by Mike Hrancia screaming for the end of days, and it ends with the band giving us a very “less is more,” BRUTAL ending.
By: Every Time I Die
Album: Hot Damn! (2003)
This is an absolutely insane song from an absolutely insane band who made the most absolutely insane album I’ve ever listened to (Hot Damn!). What really makes this breakdown special is that the band brings the song to what feels like a “big rock ending,” only to be followed by the best breakdown Hot Damn! had to offer. It’s unexpected, yet exactly what the song needed, and when ETID plays this song live Buffalonians lose their SHIT every time. (I would know, I’ve been a part of their Buffalonian crowd for a while now)
By: Chelsea Grin
Album: Recreant (single, 2008)/Desolation of Eden (2010)
This song dropped back in 2008, but in 2010 Chelsea Grin surprised us all by throwing this song in their first full length album. Not sure if it was them or the record label, but they decided to make the breakdown longer by adding one of the most brutal, minimalistic breakdowns I’ve ever heard. There’s something about the minimalism of this breakdown that makes it feel so insanely heavy. The silence in between the smashing of the china cymbal has you anticipating the chugging guitars, which in a way adds to the terrifying scene the band is portraying in this song.
By: The Chariot
Album: Wars And Rumors Of Wars (2009)
The Chariot was the most unique band the scene had ever seen. I’ll die on that hill. Granted, mathcore was known for being a bit niche, but The Chariot were truly in a league of their own. The breakdown in this song is also one of the most unique ones I’ve ever heard. The time signature changes multiple times, and it puzzled me so much that I had no choice but to sit down with pen and paper and try to figure out what the pattern was. I don’t remember what the time signatures were exactly, but I do remember that there was no pattern at all. The Chariot were known for their insane live performances, and let me tell you: if you weren’t in the crowd for this song chanting along, “VICTORY IS SUCH A LONELY WOOOORD” then you were missing out on an experience you’d remember for a lifetime. Long live The Chariot. Be sure to check out what the vocalist Josh Scogin is up to now: a two piece math rock band called ‘68.
1. You’re Ever So Inviting
Album: Define The Great Line (2006)
That’s right, you heard it here first: Christian metalcore band Underoath gave us the best breakdowns of the 2000s. This era of Underoath featured the best lineup in their career (it changed many times for whatever reason) and also their best music. The breakdown in this song features everything I love about Underoath, and nearly everything I love about breakdowns. The vocal performances are insanely good. The lead guitar is so perfectly dissonant. The build up is intense, and the breakdown brings it home. Even as I grew older and eventually gravitated away from screamo music, this song always stuck with me.
Thanks for reading, and happy listening!
Gift Shop - Closer
The Whole Thing Is Sick - Venus Twins
Watch - Nine of Swords
Only Friend - Gouge Away
Teach: - The Chariot
(Quietly) Do The Right Thing - Soul Glo
White Washed - August Burns Red
Weary - Cerce
Your Choice, Not Mine - Selective Aggression
Hunting Season - Fever 333
Thanks for tuning in again this week! I hope you enjoyed this more bite-sized edition. As always, if you’d like to contribute, send me and email: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you found value in this week’s issue, please share it with a friend!
I’m looking forward to hangin’ next time!