Review Summary: A hopelessly derivative journey into the ventricles of yet another broken heart.
How many times have music listeners been told the same, stale stories over and over again? Heartbreak, drifting away from friends, anger at an ex, it’s all been done. You would think that a new band, to attract listeners, would try something different and unique, something that hasn’t been done by a pile of other artists already. Now, I’m not saying I’m going to denounce every song about a relationship ending or something along those lines because it’s “unoriginal,” I would just like it if the song at least talked about the subject in an original way. Escape the Fate’s Dying Is Your Latest Fashion,
in all its derivative and pseudo-emotional glory, does not even pretend to accomplish this.
The album is a mongrel of rehashed ideas, both lyrically and musically. And none of its aspects are executed nearly as well as by the superior artists Escape the Fate probably took them from. The lyrics, in an effort to creatively convey the feelings of love and loss, are borderline atrocious all the way through. Like this stanza from “When I Go Out, I Want To Go Out On A Chariot of Fire;”
You’re the only one that wore your seatbelt,
We’re the only ones that cried,
You’re the only one that died.
I must say, the italics do help in making those lines look much more profound than they actually are. The word “seatbelt,” as it’s used in these lines, sticks out like a sore, unlistenable thumb not only because it’s a bland, common word, but also because it there wasn‘t even an attempt to metaphorically dress it up. The same problem is evident in this line from “There’s No Sympathy For the Dead;”
We dance like zombies do in the middle of the rain,
We see stones falling from the sky on fire
The blinding light beaming from your eyes are desire
Life has died, yet we’re still alive.
Zombies, really? I mean, I get that it’s there to support what the song is about, but there are many other ways to mean an alive/dead person, without saying the tactless-sounding “zombie.” Not to mention how awfully the rest of the stanza flows. And the rest of the album’s lyrics are either just very poorly written, generic to a very high degree, or an unfortunate combination of the two. They’re also loaded with failed attempts at cleverness and inventive metaphors, as evident in the album’s title, which is taken from “Situations.”
“Woah, dying…a fashion?
I’ve never thought about it like that before!” I’m sure the lyricist thinks he’s the shit.
And the music that stands behind these lyrics does not stand very tall. In fact, throughout the course of each song, it falls to the ground and crumbles into pieces. It’s trying so hard
to be epic and emotionally grueling, but it just ends up sounding like a terrible, pretentious mess. I hadn’t contorted my face into a grimace so sickened for a long time before I heard the string passage at the end of “There’s No Sympathy For the Dead,” or the shamelessly simplistic ‘breakdown,’ coupled with hopelessly bad death metal-esque growls at the end of “The Guillotine.” And all of the wanky guitar solos peppered throughout the album, that I’m assuming were meant to both make the album more musically interesting, and to show off the musicianship of the band members, come off sounding tacky and hilariously out of place. Almost as out of place as the ear-gratingly blunt and shamelessly pseudo-heartfelt closer “The Day I Left the Womb.” What’s really sad is that this song isn’t the first time an acoustic guitar appears out of nowhere on the album, when it shouldn’t.
Dying Is Your Latest Fashion
treads no new ground anywhere. And the stale ground it does tread on weakens and breaks through the course of every song. Bland, ‘catchy’ hooks, derivative ‘metal’ riffs, and brash, thrown-together lyrics are found everywhere. But this album is not post-hardcore, and it’s not metalcore, it just sucks.
Darling, what is going on
Honestly, that never happened,
Lying is your favorite passion
Leave me, go where you belong
Higher heels and lipstick napkins,
Dying is the latest fashion.