The Devil Wears Prada
Plagues


2.0
poor

Review

by Mike Stagno EMERITUS
August 21st, 2007 | 460 replies | 65,559 views


Release Date: 2007 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Yet another boring, rehashed metalcore album which offers little of substance to the table. Yawn.

Having never read the book "The Devil Wears Prada," nor seen the movie "The Devil Wears Prada," the name of the Ohio metalcore band The Devil Wears Prada means very little to me. And while I'm sure there is some deep, philosophical meaning behind it, but when I read it, it just seems like yet another vain, attempt at being original or different. And judging by the stupid song titles featured on The Devil Wears Prada's latest album, Plagues, song titles such as such as Hey John, What's Your Name Again and Reptar, King of the Ozone, the band's name seems just as pretentious and lame as every other similar act in the Christian metalcore scene. Interestingly enough, after listening to The Devil Wears Prada's second full length release to say that the music reflects the unoriginality or, for lake of better term, lameness of the song titles isn't too much of a stretch. In fact, throughout my several listenings of the album, such suspicions would be quite true.

While listening to Plagues one could split the album into two fairly different (both in terms of quality and actual sound) formulas. The lesser and quite frankly more annoying of these formulas is that of the heavier sound which generally make up the backbone of most of the albums songs. Not only does it sound like what virtually every other –core band out there is attempting, it's also a rather poor attempt at capitalizing on recent trends. Guitarists Chris Rubey and Jeremy DePoyster might display a shred of talent every now and then, but the duo spend more time either on the down-tuned rhythm guitar which is usually stuck in the background (but don't worry, it's still more audible than the bass guitar) or playing some trite, sterile sounding breakdown which does little to elevate the music above a tired and directionless state.

Unfortunately vocalist Mike Hranica doesn't exactly help the problem. Similarly to the breakdowns, his screams are somewhat intense sounding, but they end up hurting the song more than they help. Hranica generally utilizes a guttural scream and on some occasions a deeper growl ("DOI!" – HTML Rulez D00d), but unfortunately neither vocal style really has any range, nor variety. And while most of Plagues' songs are virtually identical, opening track Goats on a Boat does an exceptionally good job at being, well, poor. The headache inducing screams, which give off the impression that Hranica is vomiting in the studio, don't fit the layered guitars, which give off the impression that they don't seem to be able to decide whether they want to sound melodic or heavy. Repeat this over, I don't know, ten songs, and you'd have both Plagues and a rather urgent desire for an aspirin.

On the flip side, The Devil Wears Prada also makes use of fairly lively clean sections to go along with the heavy wall of sound that is their more aggressive side. And it is here where the band chooses to introduce its major sticking point – the keyboards. While the keys, played by James Baney are utilized rather often throughout the album no matter which formula the band makes use of (see Number Three, Never Forget or HTML Rulez D00d (ugh)) the electronic effects are given the most breathing room during the softer moments. And this is where Plagues shines really. The cleaner moments of the album are among the only moments where the band is listenable at all, really, and even then it isn't particularly impressive. Though the band attempts to vary things up a tad by not sticking to a certain song structure (songs such as This Song is Called, and Number Three, Never Forget start off in fairly calmly, particularly the former which opens with a brief piano piece, whereas the likes of Don't Drink and Drance (what?) and Hey Jon What's Your Name Again both start off with harsh screaming and heavy riffing), they fail to craft anything that hasn't already been heard. The fact that they use keyboards to accomplish this is a nice gimmick, but is ultimately rendered useless due to the fact that it doesn't produce an interesting sound for the band.

All and all, Plagues is a very predictable album. It isn't totally bad, as some of the more light-hearted moments (particularly in the intro to This Song is Called) are passable and somewhat interesting. But the majority of the recording is a rather poor offering which produces the listener little incentive to continue listening. The instrumental performances themselves are wholly unimpressive and do not mesh with Mike Hranica's screams (however I'll admit, his clean/whiny singing seems a little more appropriate when it is used) very well at all. Musically, The Devil Wears Prada seems unable to put together a song of decent structure and because of this; their music is devoid of emotion and sounds ridiculously uninspired. The –core kids will likely eat this up, but I would suggest that the rest of you look elsewhere.

Recommended Tracks:
This Song is Called



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Comments:Add a Comment 
Iai
Emeritus
August 21st 2007



3553 Comments


I know nothing about this album or indeed this band, but I will say that I'm glad that this review took the time to draw attention to how appalling their name is.

LifeInABox
August 21st 2007



3708 Comments


Jen Air Ick, Jen Air Ick!

cbmartinez
August 21st 2007



2525 Comments


this band is a complete joke

antihippy
August 21st 2007



696 Comments


"HTML Rulez D00d"?

:lol: wtf!?

Kiran
Emeritus
August 21st 2007



6001 Comments


Cannot stand this band

gasmaskman
August 21st 2007



1006 Comments


wtf!?

Their music is actually worse than their song titles.

Resonance
August 21st 2007



12 Comments


Their energy is admirable. Simply not my thing though.

kalkal50
August 21st 2007



2386 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

great review for an extremely annoying album, its just painful listening to the constant breakdowns and vomit soundsThis Message Edited On 08.21.07

Altmer
August 21st 2007



5652 Comments


Good review, don't like metalcore at all though.

Confessed2005
August 21st 2007



3314 Comments


The fact that they actually do reference the rugrats further highlights just how retarded they are.

kalkal50
August 21st 2007



2386 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

RUGRATS ROFLCOPTER

ToWhatEnd
August 21st 2007



3172 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I'm thinking about reviewing this pretty soon. They definitely still have some gimmicks but I also think it has some enjoyable parts to it.

kalkal50
August 21st 2007



2386 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

I guess some parts aren't bad, but I feel uneasy listening to this, I think I'm gonna bust a review on this as well, it's been a while since I rantedThis Message Edited On 08.21.07

Wizard
August 21st 2007



19383 Comments


Once again, an exceptional review Mike. Is it the norm now to just plagerise to the point that you dont even write a note of originality? These guys are the leaders in this genre of music hahahaha!

Digging: Mistigo Varggoth Darkestra - The Key to the Gates of the Apocalypse

Onelastime
August 21st 2007



36 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Well written review. It doesn't really seem like you have an ear for this brand of music. I wouldn't say they album is predicible at all. Well...i guess you could say a few parts are but for the most part...they aren't. The breakdowns are good with the synth. The first song does a good job of destroying souls at about 3:15. And the album has a decent concept believe it or not. Plagues is about the 10 plagues talked about in exodus. Throughout the album they relate the plagues to todays society. The song names are making fun of people and how they take things to far. If you notice most of the song names are involved in events of the past few years, not all but most.

chimera908
August 21st 2007



713 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

Kalkal wait until you see my long overdue rant on Dream Theater's Systematic Chaos. It may be a pointless review now but I got a lot to say. Anyway great review as usual Mike, you really need to become staff.

Pebster49
August 22nd 2007



2992 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I like your writeing but I have to disagree on you with this one, see as it may not be completely orginal, its not generic at all. The only thing that bothers me is the clean vocals, and the too christain lyrics. This is not for Metal lovers, mainly cause of those things, its for people who like -core music.

SpinLightTwo
August 22nd 2007



1041 Comments


I am listening to one of the songs, and there is nothing special. The clean vocals sound like a whinier Underoath.

gasmaskman
August 22nd 2007



1006 Comments


They do nothing to distinguish themselves among the floods of metalcore bands. Well, maybe their song titles, but they're horrible, too.

Even their name is Christian-based.

Pebster49
August 22nd 2007



2992 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

oh no! Christian based, how horriable...I don't see the difference in Christian bands and Satanic bands they both spread propaganda, but in Metal satanic bands are more "acceptable" or appealing. I guess its "cool" to praise the devil now, oh yay!





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