September 13, 2007

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Biffy Clyro, Puzzle
Roadrunner Records, Sept. 18
The NME and Kerrang hack-a-maniacs would have you believe that Biffy Clyro are the most important thing to happen to hard music since Blue Cheer guzzled their first fifth of bourbon together. After all, they opened for the Stones (somebody has to, right?) and Red Hot Chili Peppers (ditto, but with different inflection), and they’re not 100% emo. Like an old scratch ticket left on the sidewalk to be tromped under the feet of a million Manhattan pedestrians, however, Puzzle isn’t destined for greatness but mass apathy, a stone to be turned by every half-ethical reviewer in the States and quickly rolled back to where it was. The small fault lies with their parrot-like response to bands that inspire them, which in the case of their debut album (Blackened Sky) spelled regurgitation of old grunge songs note for note, whereas in Puzzle they steal the cheap Trans Siberian Orchestra idea Muse trotted out in “Take a Bow” (over which the laughter still echoes in distant canyons). Yep, that’s the small fault, but the Grand Fricking Canyon-sized planet-splitting fault lies in the fact that the rest of this album sounds like what Bowling For Soup would write if they were worriedly preoccupied with finding out which one of them was going to be on the hook for fathering Amy Winehouse’s love child. Wanna know something funny, too, “My Sharona” could walk up to “Saturday Superhouse” and say “I am your faaaather.” C-Eric W. Saeger.