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Funeral For A Friend - Between Order And Model EP (Album Review)

Thursday, 14 November 2013 Written by Alec Chillingworth

Eleven years ago, history was made. They may not have realised it, but Funeral For A Friend were entering the opening stretch of a monumental journey that would take them tearing into the UK album charts, into the ears of mainstream listeners and even to a slot opening for Iron Maiden.

But, for the time being, Funeral For A Friend were just a group of blokes recording bloody good music. This reissue of their landmark debut EP serves as a reminder to anyone who has forgotten just how important this band is. 

Opener 10.45 Amsterdam Conversations still kicks like a mule, the gruelling beat of the drums running alongside a crunchy guitar riff, giving way for occasional bursts of concentrated fret-tapping. Never lingering too long, it is a brash example of how to do post-hardcore. And that's just the first song.

Matt Davies' clean vocal approach is anthemic even this early on in the band's career, contrasting perfectly with the harsh screams of Matthew Evans (who left the band soon after).

While Davies' harmonies are sung clean, they are still drenched in authenticity. The gorgeous chorus to Juno is a prime example of this, proving that Funeral always had a knack for a good singalong when they felt like it.

The Art Of American Football rears its filthy head in an almost thrashy manner, while Red Is The New Black utilises the crushing breakdowns that would soon become a staple in the band's sound. Put simply, this is 15 minutes of perfectly executed post-hardcore. Nobody has topped it since.

This shiny, everything and the kitchen sink reissue contains more goodies too. The ballad-esque drawl of Grand Central Station could have come straight from the 'Hours' album and Davies' pained vocals paint a map of despair all over this number. It's absolutely beautiful.

The Getaway Plan rocks like an absolute beast while, sadly, Storytelling Pt 2 fails to take off like the others. A slew of live tracks are also included - the entire EP performed live, in fact. But, it’s already rawer than a dinner-party with Frankie Boyle, so why include them? There's nothing wrong with the performances, but in the context of this reissued tome, it comes across as a bit extraneous.

'Between Order And Model' was a landmark release for Funeral For A Friend, and for the whole British hardcore/post-hardcore scene as a whole. The commercial success, the critical acclaim and the greatly-disputed experimental periods were yet to follow. This EP is a snapshot of one of Britain's most criminally underrated bands doing what they do best.

Funeral For A Friend UK & Ireland Tour Dates are as follows

Fri April 25 2014 - LONDON O2 Academy Islington
Sat April 26 2014 - LEEDS The Cockpit
Sun April 27 2014 - CARDIFF Cardiff University Students Union

Click Here to Compare & Buy Funeral For A Friend Tickets at Stereoboard.com.

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