The album received mixed to positive reception from critics. With critics primarily praising the album song writing and sonic improvement from the band's predecessor, Portraits, negative criticism stemmed from its lack of innovation and the album's sometimes considered excessive length.
The band's style is seen as metalcore, or more specifically "melodic metalcore". Their music features a contrast between melodic and aggressive vocal styles, intricate guitar riffs, clean-sung choruses and breakdowns. The album is seen as a showing a sonic evolution from the bands debut album, Portraits. Dani Winter-Bates when asked about the development from Portraits he said that "it’s the same basic formula but we’ve all gotten better at our instruments." The band's sound will vary based on which vocalist takes the lead. Jason Cameron's "soulful" voice is matched by a melodic background, and is quickly contrasted by the chaos that surrounds Dani Winter-Bates aggressive growling.
Unlike their debut album The Union Of Crowns shows a melodic deathcore influence, being comparable to As I Lay Dying. Unclean vocalist Dani Winter-Bates, when asked how the music on the album sounds like he jokingly commented "basically if Michael Bolton joined Killswitch Engage" Further stating that the album is very similar to the works of Killswitch Engage and Parkway Drive. Both tracks "1603" and "A Curse" show progression beyond the bands typical sound experimenting with different instruments and song structures. "1603" uses a piano melody to open the track then guitar solo and melodic singing to guide the song.
The lyrics featured on the album talk about unification of England and Scotland with a majority of the track names relating to royalty and medieval life.
Release and PromotionEdit
The band both headlined a stage at Southampton based Takedown music festival and was the main support for Of Mice & Men on their April tour of the UK. In these dates, Bury Tomorrow debuted their two new singles, "Lionheart" and "Royal Blood", as well as two brand new songs off the album at these live shows.
On 1 May, Radio 1 host Daniel P. Carter debuted the band's third single for the album "An Honourable Reign". The music video for "An Honourable Reign" was filmed in Snowdonia with production company Sitcom Soldiers editing the footage. On July 9 the band unveiled the second track from the album "The Maiden". This was debuted both on Alternative Press and Daniel P. Carter's BBC Radio 1 podcast The Rock Show. On July 14, 2012 Bury Tomorrow released a typography styled music video for "The Maiden".
The album's release was delayed several times by the band in effort to find a record label to help distribute and promote the album. Initially projected to be released in May of that year but then was pushed further back to be planned for late June. By 2 April 2012, the announcement that Bury Tomorrow had been signed to Nuclear Blast Records came the announcement of its release dates, starting with 13 July for the European Union, 16 July for the United Kingdom and 17 July for the United States. Upon its British release, on 16 July 2012, the entire album was streamed on their Absolute Punk profile exclusively.
Upon the album's release the album debuted at number 6 Rock & Metal Chart, number 11 on the Independent Chart and number 3 on the Independent Breakers Chart. In the United States, the album peaked on 4 August 2012 at number 25 on the chart.
Ahead of the release of the album, the band has planned to support Architects in November in a tour round Britain alongside Deez Nuts and The Acacia Strain. This tour is warped round both Bury Tomorrow's and Architects' appearance at UK Warped Tour.
The album received mixed to positive reception from critics. With critics primarily praising the album song writing and sonic improvement from the band's predecessor. Bloody Good Horror in a pre-release review of the album gave a favourable assessment. Starting off the review stating "Bury Tomorrow doesn't reinvent the wheel on The Union Of Crowns, but there are times when doing something well is its own form of progression." Alt Sounds writer Candice Haridimou gave the album a score of 89% out of %100. When talking about the track Royal Blood she said "It’s more than clear at this point that the band have the skill and the passion for making big music that makes a big impact, but their desire to grow is something that shines brightly above all. Its tracks like this that show they’re ready to take metal to a new level and that the goal doesn’t always have to be tearing your face off."
Corey Hoffmeyer from Examiner credited the band for having a more concise and more creative album over their previous album, Portraits. Rockfreaks author Aleksi Pertola gave credit to singer Jason Cameron with both his vocal range and how the music was written to focus on his vocals. "Granted, the vast majority of the 14 songs do follow a rather traditional arrangement in terms of verse and chorus as a consequence. But when you've got such talent at your disposal, it would be foolish not to litter your songs with opportunities for Cameron to shine." Steven Spedding of Sputnikmusic credited their song writing and that they have found a formula that works for them saying "They have harnessed an ability to write more measured sections, where the aggression is toned down for tasteful instrumentals and this I feel is where they excel most."
Despite positive reviews, negative criticism stemmed from its lack of innovation and the album's sometimes considered excessive length. Spedding commented in his review Bury Tomorrow have "an obsession with padding out songs with breakdowns." Alternative Press writer Phil Freeman was very critical of the album, saying it "just isn’t very interesting", further stating: "Nothing establishes Bury Tomorrow as a band with anything unique or surprising to offer—which puts them in exactly the same position they were in two years ago, when their first album, Portraits, was released." Hoffmeyer, despite an otherwise positive review described it as being "frequently plagued by the mediocrity that weighed Portraits down", also saying the album's lack of innovation is shown in their strong influence by other metalcore bands, saying "Message To A King" is "basically a Parkway Drive song with clean vocals".
- "The Maiden"
- "Message to a King"
- "An Honourable Reign"
- "Knight Life"
- "Royal Blood"
- "Abdication of Power"
- "Vacant Throne"
- "A Curse"
- Dani Winter-Bates - unclean vocals
- Mehdi Vismara - lead guitar
- Davyd Winter-Bates - bass guitar
- Jason Cameron - rhythm guitar
- Adam Jackson - drums and percussion
- Produced by Antony Smith and Pedro Teixeira
- Engineered by Mike Curtis, Antony Smith an Pedro Teixeira
- Edited b Jeff Dunne an Clinton Watts
- Managed by Jamie Graham
- Mastered by Jacob Hansen
- Mixed by Pedro Teixeira