Fever is the third studio album by Welsh metalcore band, Bullet for My Valentine. Containing eleven tracks, the album was released on April 26 and 27, 2010 in the UK and in the US, respectively. The band will be touring the US this spring to support their upcoming album, starting on April 30, 2010. The band will also be headlining the second stage at this year's Download Festival, starting June 2010.
In early 2009, about a year after Bullet for My Valentine released their second studio album, Scream Aim Fire, the band started writing new material. In a March 2009 interview with Metal Hammer, Matthew Tuck stated that on previous albums he had written lyrics for the songs after the band had completed writing instrumental parts; but for Fever, Tuck had been writing both at the same time. Bullet for My Valentine originally entered the studio in April 2009 with producer Don Gilmore (best known for his work with Linkin Park and Good Charlotte) at Monnow Valley Studio, Monmouth, Wales, and cancelled tour dates in South Africa to continue recording. The band took time off from recording in mid-2009 to perform on various tours including the 2009 Mayhem Festival. During the Mayhem Festival, Bullet for My Valentine included a new song to their live setlist. Following their tours, the band returned to studio to finish Fever. Recording was completed in December 2009, and Gilmore began tracking the album shortly thereafter in "The Document Room" Studio, Malibu, California.
In a March 12, 2010 interview with UK's Metal Hammer magazine, Matthew Tuck stated about the writing and recording process for the new album:
"We wanted to do something fresh and exciting, but that was still us. Having Don Gilmore was a very conscious decision. We didn't want him to change us as musicians, just help with the vocals and get the best possible performances out of us. It's a weird thing singing in the studio; you don't get the adrenaline, the energy, the buzz, it's you in front of a microphone looking at a guy staring at you. To get the performances out in the studio was hard, but Don was amazing. We rewrote the lyrics and melodies up to five times on some songs because he didn't think they were strong enough. We worked insanely hard to get the vocal lines different but still Bullet. The vocals took longer than everything else on the album put together. It was brutal work, but I personally thought I had a huge point to prove so that’s why I stuck at it. Everyone's buzzing about this one. We just tried to get that energy and excitement and vibe back into the band because the Scream Aim Fire 2008 sessions just ripped our hearts out of wanting to be in a band."
On February 14, 2010, the band offered a new track, "Begging for Mercy", for free download from their official website for a limited time.
The first and lead single for the US, "Your Betrayal", was set for release on March 9, 2010; But, unexpectedly, was released early as a Digital 45 on iTunes along with the track "Begging for Mercy" on March 2, 2010.
The second and lead single for the UK, "The Last Fight", was released on April 19, 2010 to the radio and a limited edition 7" single on April 17, 2010. The music video was released for the UK on March 12, 2010 on the band's MySpace website, where the song can be heard too.
On February 24, 2010, Bullet for My Valentine were on a trip to Los Angeles to shoot a pair of videos, one clip is for the US lead single "Your Betrayal" (released on April 12, 2010), while the other is for the UK lead single "The Last Fight" (released on March 12, 2010). Director Paul R. Brown (best known for his work with Slipknot and Korn) handled both shoots.
Upon its release, Fever received generally positive reviews from critics. The album received a score of 64/100 based on 8 critic reviews on Metacritic. Allmusic states that on this third disc, the band "consolidate their style and split the difference between their two previous discs" and describes the album as "a solid disc by a group that knows its own strengths". Fever, also, received positive reviews from Kerrang! ("The '5 K-rated' Fever") and Rock Sound ("There's not a single track here that would create an unpleasant contrast"). Conversely, The NewReview rated the album 2.5 out of 5 and said "…wait to hear what direction the band takes next, while letting this Fever pass and move on."
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