Biffy Clyro's 2013 album, Opposites, is the band's sixth studio effort and follows up the band's hugely successful 2009 Mercury Prize-nominated release, Only Revolutions. Whether appreciated as a double- or single-disc album (the band released both versions), Opposites is a sprawling, ambitious work that once again finds the Scottish rock trio balancing its prog rock inclinations with its undeniable talent for mainstream, radio-ready pop. In that sense, Biffy Clyro are certainly one of the most album-oriented, '70s-style rock acts of their generation -- though their sound is hardly retro. On the contrary, with lead singer/guitarist Simon Neil belting in a thick brogue over the band's knotty, metal-influenced arrangements, Biffy Clyro come off more like a Scottish version of Fugazi than, say, a classic rock band like Rush, although there is a twinge of nerd-rock power here, too. There is something very concept album-esque about Biffy Clyro's Opposites, especially when taken in the entire two-disc format. It's very laser light show-friendly, as many of the songs here are heavy with loud guitars, frenetic drumming, and intricate, multi-layered arrangements. Primarily, however, the album rides on the kind of anthemic, crowd-pleasing pop songs that made Only Revolutions such a success. Where last time we got the melodic bombast of "Mountains" and "Many of Horror," here we get the equally as wide-eyed "Sounds Like Balloons" and the romantic, soundtrack-ready "Biblical." Ultimately, Biffy Clyro's gift as a band is to craft songs that balance immediately catchy hooks with complex arrangements that only help to reinforce the drama of the pop moment. Thankfully, there are plenty of these dichotomous yet rapturous moments on Opposites.
AllMusic Review by Matt Collar