Review Summary: Those who were already fans of Escape the Fate will simply be disappointed, while those who didn't like Escape the Fate to begin with will be further repulsed.
I guess Escape the Fate just isn't trying very hard to expand their fan base anymore. But then again, were they ever in the first place" It's obvious that Craig Mabbitt was never the reason that Escape the Fate became as popular as they are, and while in his first couple albums with the band he established this sort of listless attitude of what others thought of him, never before has it stooped to this level. Not only does Escape the Fate not care if you don't like them, but now they want you to hate them. What began as a sort of rebellious attitude for the band has quickly transformed into a Blood on the Dance Floor-esque "haters are my motivators" sort of ideology. And if your attitude resembles the same dumpster fire band responsible for musical travesties such as 'Yo Ho,' 'Candyland,' and countless others, then your fan base has reason to be terrified.
Considering the issues mentioned above concerning the album's message, it's actually a surprise that the music in 'Hate Me' isn't as terrible as it could have easily been. The album begins in an explosive way with 'Just a Memory,' which is easily one of the best songs to be found. However, as 'Just a Memory' proves, even the best songs from 'Hate Me' have unique ways of becoming repetitive and dull after a few listens. For example, the constant chant throughout the song of "Unforgivable" becomes incredibly tiring and annoying before long. Unfortunately, each song off of the album has its annoyances, and they range from repetitiveness to over-produced vocals. Very rarely on 'Hate Me' does Mabbitt's voice sound natural and unaltered, and there are even a few songs in which his vocals sound like they were pulled straight from an over-produced pop song. Songs like 'Live For Today' and 'I Won't Break' prove my point to near perfection.
Sure there are many things to dislike about 'Hate Me,' but there are glimmers of hope for the band's future to be found in this album, such as the songs 'Breaking Me Down' and 'Let Me Be.' While neither is perfect, they are both examples of Escape the Fate's ability to pull off slower and more thoughtful songs. The instrumentals, for the most part, also remain as good as they've ever been. The breakdowns to be found on 'Hate Me' are perfectly fine, and over-produced instrumentals are much rarer to find compared to the fake-sounding vocals. But these positive aspects of the album are few and far between, and while they provide glimmers of hope for the future of Escape the Fate (as mentioned earlier,) they are nothing more than glimmers. There is not a single part of this album that could possibly give even the most die-hard Escape the Fate fan 100% confidence that their next album will be an improvement.
'Hate Me' was disappointing, to say the least. Sure it was obvious as soon as the album was announced that Escape the Fate was going to develop a bit of an attitude problem (just look at the damn name of the album,) but there was still hope that the music itself would save the album and any sort of negative reputations the band had prior to this release. Sadly, none of that actually happened. It's never a good thing to make your fans more likely to get embarrassed to admit that they like your music, but that is exactly what Escape the Fate has done.