In an interview with DIY, bearded rocker and frontman Simon Neil stated “I don’t think we’ve ever just wanted to be a routine band – you know, reliable old Biffy Clyro! We’d rather be completely unreliable and have people think we’ve lost the plot”. Given the material that has been released thus far from their seventh LP Ellipsis, set to be released on July 8th, it can be said that Animal Style is the first taste of the strange ways the band are attempting to alter their sound and show that, thankfully, they can still manage to be refreshing despite their nearly two decade long career.
Opening up with clunky guitars before breaking into a riff that is drenched in good old Metallica flare, the track has a production value that evokes both the grittiness and beauty that Rich Costey managed to display on Frank Turner’s Tape Deck Heart. While that release was full of sentimental, heartbroken tunes, over here we have an untamable beast which is feral by its very definition: a suspenseful, distorted bridge before an aggressive and crisp chorus makes Animal Style stand out as one of their best songs from a songwriting standpoint alone. Even a humorous wee monkey hollering from Neil at the end, a nice addition might I add, isn’t enough to wipe away how dirty but devilishly brilliant the song.
While Wolves of Winter felt more like Biffy 2.5 than the 3.0 we were teased with in various interviews, Biffy have made good on their promise here with a sensational track that perfectly encomposes what makes the band such a thrill to listen to. “Either love it or hate it, that’s what we want, that’s what we’ve always kind of wanted” Simon Neil stated and he’s right to be so laid back: Biffy are back and just as great as ever.
-Liam Menzies (@blinkclyro)