Review Summary: Finally progressing as a band
Black Veil Brides is a band with probably the most annoying fan base in the world, and lyrics about being yourself and not killing yourself. With a terrible reputation for both the way they dress and how they try to be "rock n roll" this band was doomed to fall into nothing but 13 year old teen problems' salvation from the world. Going through two terrible LPs before and one not so terrible EP, this band had become the laughing stock of the music community, and then came Wretched and Divine.
The concept of this album is an epic battle between The Wild Ones, who are trying to keep order and peace, and F.E.A.R an organization that wants to take the world by storm so to speak, and to an extent this concept is pretty well done. Besides a generic 30 second intro, this album starts out with I Am Bulletproof and from the get go, this band shows some mass improvement. No longer using lyrics about loving yourself, they start with talking about how they are ready to face off against this "new world order" and nothing was going to bring them down. Andy sounds better than ever before, his voice not sounding so "Scene and dark" but sounding nearly uplifting and much more powerful than the extent he showed before. The vocal work is only Andy's clean singing, which is actually pretty good, his range is very short but he can deliver powerful choruses and powerful emotion behind the lyrics.
The guitar work in this album is pretty well refined as well, the riffs have chugs here and there, but Jake Pitts is an outstanding guitarist, providing some strong solos, and chord progressions that completely go past anything this band was capable of before. Jinxx backs Jake very well, and the two put some powerful guitar into the tracks, and the highlight of the guitar work is defined in lead single and ending track "In The End". Title Track, "Wretched and Devine" is another example of how this band has improved, with the band going past anything they have written before, leaving not only a lighter tone to their music, but actually writing a song that fits the concept of the album itself. The bass from Ashley Purdy isn't really groundbreaking, nor audible but he does shine in a few spots, and he does some powerful backing vocals.
The drums for the album are the best they could ever have been for this band, "CC" has some fun with both bass pedals in many of the songs and each song brings a unique drum experience, not relying on punk beats or bass blasts to be filler so to speak, but actually give a strong rhythm for the rest of the band. "I Am Bulletproof" and "In The End" are an example of just how much of a drummer he can be, and how strong the drums influence how the band as a while can provide the sound they were trying to reach for.
As a whole, BvB finally released an album that doesn't sound too terrible, but they also show there are a few things they can expand and try to improve on. Whether it be slower songs such as Lost At All or something catchy and memorable "In The End" Black Veil Brides have reached their high point of their career and hopefully can bring something stronger next time around.