Review Summary: Really awful
Black Veil Brides are a band that over recent years has achieved more than a little attention for various reasons, and none of them are really any good. Their story of course began on MySpace as with many of the big artists in the commercial metal and hard rock scene of today. It was on this site that they hosted the music video for a single entitled Knives And Pens, showing them to the world for the first time and the receptions were negative to say the least. First they were torn apart for their image consisting of attempting to look as much like females as possible and following this the band started to get more hate than should be humanly possible for their actual music. The video showed off a band using monotonous screaming, generic riff work and some terrible clean vocals that were considered worse than having blades repeatedly thrust into your anus. So yeah, the band is hated at best. Following this they put out two albums of which neither managed to fix their reputation and they have steadily degraded more and more over the years and now, come 2013, they have finally released their third album to the music community, promising a punk rock concept album unlike anything the band has put out before. It is sad to say that this is not even close to the truth, and what has essentially been gifted unto us is another draft of Set The World On Fire, bringing with it all the cheesy hard rock that was found on there with slightly more adept guitar work but perhaps one of the most generic collections of songs that will be found this year.
A great example as to the sound of this release would be New Year's Day. Who would have thought that one could be put to sleep in under three and a half minutes by a rock song? The song is undeniably catchy but this was the case with Set The World On Fire, an album that sadly was rather weak although it did get a little undermined a little purely because of Fallen Angels, the terrible lead single. This song lacks any real substance and has perhaps some of the worst lyrics this side of Blood On The Dance Floor. Seriously this manages to take what we perceive to be cheesy and adds in more sprinklings of cheddar and creates something totally abysmal. "It's New Year's Day, so rise from these ashes" is one of the particular lines from the chorus and if that does not have your eyes rolling back in your head and cause an impatient and rather humorous chuckle to be emitted from your mouth then you are perhaps a fan of brokenCYDE or Emmure. The guitar work is bland and primarily consists of chugging along at a mid tempo for the duration of the song. One of the new additions to this album is shown off in this song to absolutely no effect, and that is Jake Pitts' use of violins which is an idea that should have been aborted upon inception. The talented soloing that was mainly comprised of the over-usage of three fingered sweeps but somehow managed to be the best thing about their past two albums is completely missing here and in its place is one of the most generic and loosely fitting solos to have been written. If you want an example as to how nauseating this album gets then perhaps this is the only place you should look.
There is one good song on this release however that really stands out and that is the single released from it entitled In The End. This opens up with a rather nice piece of vocal work before launching into a really incredible little guitar fill that could not have been better written. Andy's voice is actually really rather strong on this song, and the album in general but you would not notice as the rest of the album acts as a forced lullaby. He has a fairly low voice and sings with a lot of confidence on here and it is clear that he has progressed a long way since the appalling emo vocals that infested every damn corridor of We Stitch These Wounds. There are still the annoying "woah woah" moments that plagued Set The World On Fire but they are actually more tolerable given how much better Andy Biersack has gotten since the release of that particular release last year. One thing that should be pointed out about this release how ever is that the drumming is a huge step down from the last release. Christian Coma on Set The World On Fire gave the album a real rock feel, whereas the vocals felt overly processed and the guitars bland it was always CC that pulled the band through whilst keeping a really solid rhythm. He has already shown that he is a talented drummer, perhaps too talented for a generic band like Black Veil Brides so what is he doing playing the same repetitive eighty beats per minute beats throughout every single song?
The story of this album itself is really rather cheesy and poor and not very well executed at all. The story follows the Wretched And Divine in their fight against the evil F.E.A.R. and is told through a number of little interludes scattered throughout and to a lesser degree through the boring excuse for lyricism in the songs themselves. The band really should have stuck to their positive "be yourself" messages that infested the past two releases, despite how hypocritical it is that a band of boys dressing as girls and wearing so much makeup should tell anyone to "be yourself". This form of music really suited the band a lot more as they actually knew how to write semi decent lyrics no matter how cheesy or generic they might be and how ridiculous it might sound for someone to be praising their unanimously hated first two albums. The band have even taken the concept of this album so far that they are actually developing a film out of it and it should be noted that I am honestly looking forward more to seeing a collection of cross dressers running around on screen most likely looking as ludicrous as it gets than I enjoyed listening to this release's lyrics. Hopefully the story suits the Western style of movie they have promised better than it suited this piss poor excuse for a "punk" album as this was a boring, bland and thoroughly snooze-inducing release with little to no real merit to be found in it at all.