Black Veil Brides
Black Veil Brides


2.5
average

Review

by Andrew W. Gold CONTRIBUTOR (111 Reviews)
November 23rd, 2014 | 302 replies


Release Date: 10/28/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Black Veil Brides is Black Veil Brides doing Black Veil Brides. Take that as you will.

Few bands in the modern hard rock/metal scene can stir up as much controversy as the California-based quintet Black Veil Brides, and it’s not hard to understand why. Their image is Hot Topic personified and has been ever since their debut We Stitch These Wounds. This notion was further reinforced by the cover of their sophomore release Set the World on Fire, which looks like it came straight out of the ’80s glam rock scene with an extra dose of “gothic” for good measure. Frontman Andy Biersack famously gave a less-than-humble speech upon receiving the Golden God song of the year award for ‘In the End’. But as funny as it was to watch him call out “fat motherfuckers” in the audience for booing him, it doesn’t change the fact that Andy can sometimes be a world-class douchebag. On the music front, the band has developed into little more than a second-rate Avenged Sevenfold with poppy choruses, cheesy guitar leads, generic song structures, and the like. So with this lavish reputation behind them, you may be wondering: how does Black Veil Brides’ fourth studio album fare amongst the rest of its ilk? And surprisingly, it really isn’t half bad.

Despite the brazen cover art, Black Veil Brides isn’t an attempt to be grandiose or over-the-top in any fashion. To the contrary, it’s as if the band embraced their niche and simply aimed to make the most straightforward, radio-friendly hard rock songs they can. There are heavy riffs, there are catchy choruses, and shredding guitar leads are aplenty. In fact, nothing paints a clearer picture of what you’ll be hearing in Black Veil Brides than opener and lead single ‘Heart of Fire’ – the song title alone should at least give you a hint. On the upside, while ‘The Shattered God’ has a bridge that sounds ripped straight from Avenged Sevenfold’s Nightmare, it fits snug within the song’s atmosphere and emphasizes both the dark riffs as well as its oddly uplifting chorus. The better tracks on Black Veil Brides are those that show the band in unfamiliar territory. One of the two ballads on record and the only one worth hearing, ‘Walk Away’, is the most mature Black Veil Brides song to date. It’s a slow piano-driven song about the perils of break-up. As cliché and asinine as that sounds, Black Veil Brides pull it off in a refreshing, unassuming way – and it actually sounds good. Strings soar atop harmonized melodies; simple guitar solos rank among the best in the band’s career, and the piano aptly lays the groundwork for the song’s build up and subsequent explosion during its powerful climax. It’s a notable songwriting improvement compared to past works and proves that Black Veil Brides are indeed capable of writing an effective ballad.

However, these minor improvements don’t negate the fact that Black Veil Brides have fundamental issues as a band – the most obvious being frontman Andy Biersack and his planet-sized ego. His vocals are front-and-center in the mix here, which is typically what you want in rock music, but when the vocals are so loud that you physically cannot focus on anything else when the man is singing, then it becomes a problem. Biersack isn’t entirely to blame though, as the production job in general is abysmal at best. The guitars are weak and pack no punch whatsoever, and some of the album’s best riffs are buried under the audacious vocal mix. The loudness of Andy’s voice also makes his faults that much more noticeable. His tone has not improved a bit since Wretched and Divine. The low, raspy delivery is welcome in certain instances, but unfortunately here it comes off as more of a distraction than anything. That’s not to say he’s a terrible singer – he can come up with memorable lines now and again (for example, closer ‘Crown of Thorns’ has the best chorus on the album due to the melodious vocal hook). It just sounds like between each successive studio release, Andy spends his free time vigorously rubbing sandpaper in and around his vocal cords. Although, I’d imagine smoking a pack of cigarettes a day produces the same desired effect.

As a whole, Black Veil Brides is the band at their most self-aware and honest. It’s exactly what you’d expect from Black Veil Brides – simply structured radio metal with fast guitar solos and no surprises. It’s a safe formula, but it’s a formula with very little reward. The good news is that this album is easily better than Hail to the King (though that’s not saying much) and is the most realized, all-around best album Black Veil Brides has put out thus far. The bad news is that, well, it’s still Black Veil Brides.

Recommended Tracks:
Walk Away
The Shattered God
Crown of Thorns



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Comments:Add a Comment 
Insurrection
Contributing Reviewer
November 23rd 2014


24402 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

most original summary ever i know



vid of andy cursing out fatties: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oATHAqz4_sU&t=50s

Digging: Protest the Hero - Pacific Myth

JAXETA
November 23rd 2014


805 Comments


p much

Beardog
November 23rd 2014


1545 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

I agres, but think the vocals are really bad

DrGonzo1937
Contributing Reviewer
November 23rd 2014


13419 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Didn't think you'd have give this the time of day insurrection. Great review though

Digging: Chelsea Wolfe - Hiss Spun

Arcade
Staff Reviewer
November 23rd 2014


8437 Comments


I'd probably lean towards a 3, band are overhated a little bit.

great review, Ins.

Digging: King Krule - The OOZ

DrGonzo1937
Contributing Reviewer
November 23rd 2014


13419 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Not easy, when they're all a bunch of stuck up douche bags.

Toondude10
November 23rd 2014


11395 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Correct rating, though I found their last album to be more tolerable.



Good review

Digging: August Burns Red - Phantom Anthem

Gameofmetal
Staff Reviewer
November 23rd 2014


10148 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

"about the paroles of break-up"



I think you mean "perils"?



Good review, you pretty much summed up all my exact thoughts on the album.

Digging: Wolves in the Throne Room - Thrice Woven

Gameofmetal
Staff Reviewer
November 23rd 2014


10148 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

He was pretty big dick head in that video.



Kinda funny to see that his normal voice is pretty much the same as his singing.



Bad

Nocturnalize
November 23rd 2014


2463 Comments


This is my new gurls favourite band

She's a cunt but after finally listening to this band I can say they they get too much hate here even though they are pretty fuggin bad.

Gameofmetal
Staff Reviewer
November 23rd 2014


10148 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

Just a tad. Wretched and Divine is worth a three but everything is mostly trashy.

Froot
November 23rd 2014


1910 Comments


so, like, are they getting better with each release?

Gameofmetal
Staff Reviewer
November 23rd 2014


10148 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

They were until this album

Insurrection
Contributing Reviewer
November 23rd 2014


24402 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

"I think you mean "perils"?"



that's what i get for proofreading at 2am. cheers

Tunaboy45
November 23rd 2014


15513 Comments


Nice review, I have no desire to listen to this.

Toondude10
November 23rd 2014


11395 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Faithless is really the only track that I can consider to be actually good. Almost everything else can go suck Andy Biersack's dick.

trackbytrackreviews
November 23rd 2014


3321 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

crown of thorns is nice

Mister Twister
November 23rd 2014


2495 Comments


lemme guess, everybody's gonna give this a 1 in a bit because they don't like the band members when it's actually just slightly sub-par

just like wretched and divine

Toondude10
November 23rd 2014


11395 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

yeah, they're just gonna give it a 1 just because it's Black Veil Brides. Then again, I'm surprised that this has many +3 ratings as it does.

trackbytrackreviews
November 23rd 2014


3321 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I thought we had already established that



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