Brand New
The Devil and God Are Raging Inside Me


4.5
superb

Review

by Adam Knott EMERITUS
December 11th, 2010 | 91 replies


Release Date: 2006 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The devil's stopped winning.

When I was in my second year at university I was a self-destructing mess. I slept until the evening, woke up, got wasted, ruined friendships, punched my friends and then stayed awake thinking about a girl that was too far away. I was a directionless jumble of insecurities and obsessions, starting assignments three hours before they were due, and missing every lecture and seminar on my timetable despite living next door. I remember walking down my street in the bite of autumn holding a bottle of wine on my way to meet half-friends in a bar, already blind drunk only two days after a weekend that had seen me black out twice.

I am still unable to put distance between that image - a perfect summation of everything that was wrong with me in those six months - and 'Sowing Season', the opening track of The Devil And God Are Raging Inside Me. I used to think the passion was something I only felt because of the rage inside me; in short, I believed that my personal attachment to the album it propelled could be traced without concession to the adrenaline that shot through me when I couldn't help but scream along to the track's chorus, a desperate scream. 'YEAH!' I don't even know why it meant so much.For almost a year I couldn't listen to it; every time Jesse Lacey exploded, angry and conflicted, it was just a reflection of me on that bitter street; every time he had the poise to see himself for the mess he was, it was just an echo of me wondering what the fuck I was doing.

That's what TDAG is - an echo, a reflection, a shadow. It is quite possible the emotionally heaviest album I've ever heard, particularly in terms of the painful. Brand New employ the unexpected - especially for fans of the band's previous work - to send those jolts of feeling through their audience. Just in the first song, there are two phenomenal, unexpected moments which drag the listener to attention: the first, the sudden and dramatic surge that is the first chorus' momentous guitars; the second, the way the sensation is pushed into overdrive by an even louder, more frantic second refrain.

It's this erratic, unpredictable core which makes TDAG a pain to listen to, and I mean that in the best possible way; this is not a happy album, it's not meant to be, and it's very unlikely to hook onto any of your happiest memories. The lines that resonate are the troubled ones, where Lacey screams that he can't shake the feeling surrounded by an ocean of pulsing guitars, or asks what you learned tonight with the slightest hint of caution in his voice. And the aesthetic that envelopes and suffocates him is of the same origins; it's raw, it's cutting, it's uncomfortable and it's damn depressing.

So why the hell should you listen to it? The Devil And God Are Raging Inside Me is an exercise in exorcism; it's the simple act of facing up to your problems and wrongdoings over and over and over again that brings about the acceptance of them and eventually removes them from your psyche. It's ambitiously constructed, decidedly overwrought and undoubtedly one of the most difficult listens you'll encounter, simply by virtue of its tortured subject matter and claustrophobic songwriting. But it all adds up to something wholly intense and personal, which might tear you to pieces the first few times and a few more after that. But eventually, after a while, the devil stops winning. I'm not quite sure God ever takes control, but I guess you never really know.



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user ratings (4985)
Chart.
4.5
superb
other reviews of this album
1 of
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    I killed him too...

    SowingSeason STAFF (5)
    Breathtaking, magnificent, and compelling. Brand New’s crowning achievement as one of t...

    Channing Freeman STAFF (5)
    Settle, baby....

    Rob Marais (5)
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  • Jorn van Schaïk (4.5)
    Do I divide and fall apart?...

    Robby Roark (The Sludge) (4)
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    Ty (5)
    I often think of you. Yet, rare is a night in these times where I let your sound be heard....

  • Ciaran McManus (5)
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    soleiletlune (4)
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    Christopher (4.5)
    Brand New's Magnum Opus...

  • IAMSOEPIC (4.5)
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    Ian (4.5)
    Brand New pushes the envelope to the best of their ability in order to create a more sophi...

    Marc Wells (5)
    The Devil And God Are Raging Inside Me is surprising to say the least. I knew these guys h...

    6604 (4)
    Brand New returns after 3 years of silence with an album that is truly stunning....

  • DhA (4.5)
    A breathtaking album by a band who have developed in leaps and bounds, held back only by t...

    Dr Hank Paulson (3.5)
    The Devil and God Are Raging Inside Me is an astounding achievement and will continue to b...

    Quadrochosis (5)
    I can never lose it....

    kevin234 (5)
    This is hitting rock bottom....

  • Mall (3.5)
    Sure as hell paid for that mistake...

    Kiet Truong (5)
    Brand New shows everyone that they are here to stay with their best effort yet....

    Garrett H. (3.5)
    A random album never heard before turns into a brand new favorite....

    Andrew Walker (5)
    ...

  • Idioteque (5)
    Music for people with big, fluffy hearts....

    Understanding In a Crash (2.5)
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    Blair Chopin (5)
    ...

    KTLL (3)
    With the exception of a few songs, you will know a track's progression by its opening chor...

    bnththespinlite (5)
    Wonderful album, impressed, and worth the wait...

    JackFr (5)
    You need to hear this album now. One of the most incredible pieces of art released in the ...

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    crandynewman (2)
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Comments:Add a Comment 
Knott-
Emeritus
December 11th 2010


10198 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Lol, this album definitely needed another review.



I was a fucking mess.

Knott-
Emeritus
December 11th 2010


10198 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Also yeah both the Brand New reviews I've written are ridiculously personal, go fuck yourself if you have a problem with that.

Deviant.
Staff Reviewer
December 11th 2010


32190 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Annoying that all the reviews for this album have created a gap between the end of your review and the first comment

Knott-
Emeritus
December 11th 2010


10198 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Haha yeah, I know. Ridiculously over-reviewed album, something which I just added to. This is the best out of all of those reviews though.



;D

JWT155
December 11th 2010


11950 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Damn... good read Knott, kinda have the same problems at college myself atm. Pos.

Spec
December 11th 2010


29186 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

The Devil And God Are Asian Inside Me.

Spec
December 11th 2010


29186 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

Really bad summary IMO. Good review though.

FyodorDostoevsky
December 11th 2010


412 Comments


It is a pretty terrible summary, but a REALLY good review. pos

Knott-
Emeritus
December 11th 2010


10198 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Really, you don't like the summary? Hmmmph. Thanks though :P

Athom
Emeritus
December 11th 2010


17241 Comments


i never listen to this much anymore. or any brand new really.

Knott-
Emeritus
December 11th 2010


10198 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Deja is still my favourite.



You're clearly not depressed enough, Adam.

JWT155
December 11th 2010


11950 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Deja is my favorite as well, too catchy.

Athom
Emeritus
December 11th 2010


17241 Comments


no i am. ive just found things i relate to more that have become my go to contemplative depressing music


Electric City
Emeritus
December 11th 2010


15756 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

123



still one of my favorite albums though

Knott-
Emeritus
December 11th 2010


10198 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

You've clearly not killed enough seven-year-olds drunk at the wheel, Adam.

JWT155
December 11th 2010


11950 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

They were 6 and a half Knott.

Knott-
Emeritus
December 11th 2010


10198 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

3 Adams posting in a row ITT!



Round it up, JWT? Haha.

Emim
December 11th 2010


26739 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Knott a bad review at all. ;)



I really love reading the why part in reviews like this.









Oh, and btw: The Devil and God Are Asian Inside Me

PinkBlackberry
December 11th 2010


2346 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Knott, honestly. fan-fucking-tastic review, I can't express how awesome of a read that was. I'm going through similar shit..It's nice to know there are others (were others) who went through the same bullshit.

bailar14
December 11th 2010


1603 Comments


excellent review once again mi amor



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