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~ A Limited edition silver Bullet For Your Valentine!~
This little Bullet For My Valentine USB Stick which (came as part of a BFMV limited edition gift set), was something that I came across online by chance and as soon as I saw it I and felt it was a well priced and useful item on which to store up to 1 GB of data which I just had to have. It also had the added bonus of being a limited edition item that is linked to the welsh metal band (yes there is such as thing as a welsh metal band!) Bullet For My Valentine, with a number of pre loaded features that come in an easy to access format including the whole of B For MVs Scream Aim Fire album released in 2008.
Having found that the majority of USB sticks that I have come across are more functional than anything else, I felt that this little USB stick might be something that would appeal to many Bullet For My Valentine fans or to anyone thinking of buying a gift for a fan of the band, making this item worth reviewing here on Dooyoo. After a product suggestion was made for the gift tin including the USB stick, I am now able to share my thoughts about the whole set of items that came with my limited edition set (which was my original suggestion) as it can still be found on sale at some online sites and comes well presented making it a quirky yet useful gift.
~The limited edition B For MV gift tin~
The set that I have which is what I suggested to Dooyoo comprises of a number of items including a 1GB USB stick, a presentation tin and a band t shirt all based around the 2008 album named Scream Aim Fire, released by Bullet For My Valentine. The presentation tin is nicely put together with a mostly black coloured finish to the outside, with the front showing artwork from the album Scream Aim Fire and the Bullet For My Valentine logo being printed onto a raised and textured piece in the front centre of the tin lid. The back of the tin shows more artwork relating to the band as well as a picture of the t shirt that comes with the set and a paragraph which tells you a little about the band, their live performances and the album.
I feel that the whole set is very well put together having a nice combination of elements to it that should please any Bullet fan. The tin is rather good being well finished with a lid that closes down to make a nice secure fit over the base, whilst not being too hard to open when needed. As the presentation tin is well made it really does help to protect the USB stick and the t shirt when in transit if buying the set online and makes a good storage tin once opened as it is roomy enough to be used to store all sorts of items safely and securely inside.
~The B For MV T shirt~
The t shirt that came with my limited edition set was packed safely into the presentation tin in its own thin clear plastic cellophane wrapping which kept the t shirt in tip top shape making it relatively crease free and ready to wear once out of the packing. The t shirt came as a one size fits all item which was made from a nice thick cotton based material having a mainly black colourway with the artwork on the front showing the pillars of justice being encircled by a group of hungry vultures set amongst a storm laden sky. The artwork gives a very atmospheric look that is in keeping with the theme of the album and the colours used which are in deep dark shades to match the mood do give a boost to the over all design. In wear the t shirt has not faded even after a number of washes and has faired well after being dried in the tumble dryer with minimal shrinking that has not effected the wearability at all. The stitching on the t shirt has remained in good condition with no snagging, ripping or tearing and the t shirt is still looking neat and well presented even after a number of outings.
~ Presentation of the USB stick~
The USB stick that came with my gift tin was set into its own cardboard case which was made from a simple light feeling card type material with an outer sleeve to it. The black coloured case was complimented by a small see through panel showing the USB stick on one side and the album artwork from Scream Aim Fire on the other, making a very nicely presented gift pack that is of a similar size to a double album type of music cd. The back of the pack shows the track list from the music album as well as details about the USB stick and the inner piece of the pack has a compartment which holds the USB stick securely in place keeping it nice and safe ready for use.
Once out of the pack it becomes clear that what you get with this set is no standard USB stick as it is styled into the shape of a silver bullet which shows the Bullet For My Valentine name in a font that matches the standard style adopted by the band. The little silver bullet shaped USB is very sleek and well made with a polished silver toned almost chromed looking finish to it which has not faded or scratched since I have had the USB in use. The end of the USB stick has a very useful keyring attachment to it, that has a short yet workable silver toned chain and a clip on and off key holder that works well if wanting to use the USB stick as a dual purpose item.
~Ease of use~
I feel that in use all the items in the set have worked well and have remained in good over all condition with the storage tin being useful as somewhere to keep all manner of items, the t shirt being comfortable to wear and easy to wash and care for and the USB stick being a really handy way to store data, photos, videos and in fact anything that can be stored on a USB with a 1GB storage capacity. The USB stick works with almost any computer that is able to cope with playing back compressed audio or video files and all you need to do in order to use the USB stick is simply plug it into the port on your computer.
The tip of the bullet shaped USB stick can be simply opened, with no force needed at all to reveal the fitting that connects with your pc/ laptop and it is easy enough to take the top of the bullet off in order to use the USB stick as and when needed. The tip of the bullet forms a safe and secure cover when the USB is not in use and it clicks easily over the main body of the stick making a good seal which stays firmly closed even when using this as a place to store your keys. The lid of the USB is not as pointy and dangerous as you might think and although it gives the illusion of being super sharp and pointy in reality it is smooth and softly rounded at the tip end making it safer to use as a keyring.
~Main system requirements~
In order to use the USB stick you will need a pc or laptop that operates using any of the following systems as a minimum which include: Windows ME/ 2000 / XP, Linux with Kernal 2.4 and MAC OS9/ OS X. A USB 2.0 compliant driver is required for these systems and for Windows 98 a compatible driver is required which can be downloaded from the recommended online source which is stated on the storage box that the USB stick comes in. I have had this USB stick working on both a Windows system and a MAC system with the only real difference being that fact that the bonus items already loaded onto the USB seem to load better on the Mac system. Once the USB stick has been installed an icon comes up on my desktop showing an icon with the words B For MV stick underneath it, which I can click on with ease in order to access the features.
~SCREAM! If you want to go faster~
The main features of the USB that have been built in include a number of things which are aimed at Bullet For My Valentine fans such as a series of 12 (although there are a number of repeats) wallpapers showing the band looking ultra moody whilst posing in front of a set of pillars, at the base of a stairwell (um not very rock bandish really) and in a ballroom looking mean and lean dressed head to foot in moody black skinny fit jeans (not dancing just posing of course). The other wall papers are a series of copies of the album artwork showing the pillars of justice surrounded by those pesky vultures once again set against a stormy sky. I thought that the wallpapers were a nice enough touch and although I can't say they really appealed all that much to myself, I am certain die hard fans of the band would like to get their mitts on these well presented wallpapers.
There is also a full on 15 minute interview with the band in which they talk openly about the making of the Scream Aim Fire album and the issues which surrounded their lives at the time of both writing and recording it. There are only 3 members of the band present throughout the interview which include the lead singer (Matt Tuck) as well as the lead guitarist and the bassist. The trio do try to come up with plausible reasons for having written some of the tracks on the album such as the problems Tuck had when he underwent surgery thinking he may never be able to sing as front man of B For MV afterwards and the birth of the bassists baby coinciding with the sad passing of his father at the same time in his life. Throughout you are able to hear the band tell you in their own words why they wrote each of the tracks on Scream Aim Fire which once again would be of interest to many a B For MV fan.
~AIM! To sing along with all the music tracks!~
The USB stick automatically loads up an album booklet in the form of an easy access pdf file which has 8 pages to it and you just need to click on the booklet icon when you want to open the file in order to see the artwork, photo and lyrics that are part of the music album. Amongst the lyrics there is a photo of the band that is a rather good one of the 4 of them stood at the base of a staircase (I see a staircase theme running through here once again) where the band are surrounded by vultures (that look more like bored crows), with the ever present stormy sky set into the back ground for an extra touch of drama. The song lyrics are in a small yet easy to read type face that you could easily print off if you wanted to, so if you fancy a quick chorus of the title track ' Over the top, over the top....right now its killing time' etc etc, you can join in with no fear of getting the words wrong (he or she who hasn't done that many a time does not exist!), which will make you an uber fan once gig time comes around and you finally get your hands on tickets to see the band live.
~FIRE! Download the music~
Matthew 'Matt' Tuck. On Lead Vocals and Guitar
Michael 'Padge' Paget. On Guitar
Jason 'Jay' James. On Bass Guitar
Michael 'Moose' Thomas. On Drums
The music tracks included on the USB stick include the following titles (begining with the title track):
Scream Aim Fire
Eye Of The Storm
Hearts Burst Into Fire
Waking The Demon
Deliver Us From Evil
Take It Out On Me
End Of Days
Last To Know
Forever And Always
Ashes Of The Innocent
This means that not only are you getting a handy little USB stick which can allow you to store up to 830.8 MB of your own data on if the music tracks, 15 minute interview video, pdf booklet and wall papers are still stored on the USBs memory, you are also getting a limited edition presentation tin and a t shirt if you opt for the all in one deal rather than just the USB stick as a stand alone item. The music tracks which make up the Scream Aim Fire album do have a number of high points as well as some low points, although over all the inclusion of the entire album on the USB stick is something that is well worth having as you can easily store these tracks on your PC/ laptop and then transfer them to your ipod if wanted.
I wouldn't say that all the tracks on this metalcore album are as catchy and easy to listen to as the highly commercial track 'Tears Don't Fall' from B For MVs first album 'The Poison', although over all the album works well enough, having a good number of high points and interesting riffs, which leaves me feeling that I am more than pleased with all the tracks having been included as pre stored items on the USB stick. There have been a number of comparisons between B For MVs style and that of Avenged Sevenfold although I feel that the the two pronged attack of the super twiddly diddly guitarists in the later band who are the best at their craft in their genre at present, combined with M Shadows brilliant vocals and the Revs (RIP) drum beats, do walk all over the efforts of many of the tracks on Scream Aim Fire which in the end comes in at a respectable second place.
There are a number of other bands with shared influences that might make this bullet shaped USB stick with its pre loaded full length Scream Aim Fire album a good choice for you even if you are not a confirmed B For MV fan. These include american post hard core band Escape The Fate, californian metal core band Atreyu, florida metal core band Trivium and Los Angeles heavy metal band Five Finger Death Punch. Whilst B For MV share many similar influences with these bands it is a matter of personal choice as to whether this item will suit your tastes so it may be an idea to listen to some of the tracks before deciding to buy this. There is one track on this album where the lead singer from Skindred offers up his usual vocal styling to good advantage and the opening track from which the album takes its name is a sure fire winner which has plenty going for it and will certainly get you in the mood for the rest of the album.
~Price and rating~
When I bought my B For MV USB stick I was very lucky with the price I paid 2 years ago as it was on offer at a greatly reduced price which I snapped up, as I felt the set offered very good value when compared with the price of the album as a stand alone item. Having recently checked prices online I can see that the USB stick on its own is now listed at up to £36 on some sites with cheaper prices of closer to £18 being listed on Ebay. Amazon UK are showing a listing for what they are calling a 't shirt in a tin' for £14.99 which looks to be the same item as the set I have, although the information on the page doesn't make it 100% clear whether the USB stick is included in that price.
If ordering from Amazon it would be worth checking what is included in the deal before parting with any money as they are also listing the USB stick as a stand alone item for a price of £20. As far as rating the set that I have reviewed here which includes the quirky silver chrome coloured bullet shaped USB stick, the presentation tin and the t shirt bearing artwork from the album, I feel that I certainly got good value for money and I have been pleased with my purchase. I found that the the quality of the t shirt has been good, the ease of use of the USB stick and the inclusion of the entire Scream Aim Fire album is something I have liked and the over all presentation of the items within the limited edition set I bought is very good, therefore I have no hesitation in giving this item a 5 star product rating.