Review Summary: Reopening Old Wounds
Some things are better left alone; But I am not entirely sure that this applies to the debut album of Hollywood Based Rock Band Black Veil Brides, 2010’s We Stitch These Wounds. Recorded in a jingle studio at 3am on a shoe-string budget, WSTW helped propel BVB into the consciousness of modern Hard Rock listeners, even if it was not the album the band had hoped for. Sonically the album is a muddy, low-budget, no thrills DIY affair, with charm for sure - but nonetheless a sore thumb in the future catalogue of the bands expertly executed releases.
With this in mind, the band took to the studio in 2020, a whole deace after the original release, to give WSTW (Henceforth known as Restitch These Wounds, or RSTW) the benefit of 10+ years in the music industry and a budget larger than that of an In’N’out meal.
I feel it only right to mention that despite being this website's resident BVB loon, There were certain aspects of this revisit that did leave me a bit confused. For a start, Andy’s voice is unusually low in the mix, and feels like he’s singing a 2020 version of his 2010 voice, which is a bit of a shame, as Andy has improved his vocals tenfold since the band’s debut hit shelves (you’d only have to check out the bands EP “The Night'' released just half a year before this to hear Andy in complete control of the bands work). However this is a very minor gripe in the grand scheme of things, and improvement of Andy’s voice is still very much noticeable. The Bass is slightly less audible as well, which is a shame, as BVB new recruit, Lonny Eagleton is a real gem.
Make no mistake though folks, RSTW is by far the superior way to listen to this album. Production and Mixing was handled by the bands very own Jake Pitts (Guitar) and in my humble opinion is vastly superior to the original, the album sounds MASSIVE. The Drums, presented by percussion beast CC (who was not present when the band recorded WSTW) are so SO much better than the original drumming, and are a big highlight of the album. Original Track “The Morticians Daughter” has been totally revamped, and in actuality replaced by a gorgeous overture of soothing violins to the original melody of the song, provided by the bands secret weapon (guitarist / violinist) Jinxx. And in my opinion was absolutely the right creative choice to make, as the original sounds like it was written by an 18 year old love-sick boy, well because it was. I don’t think that 29 year old Andy had much desire to to sing this one again, which left us with a neat new version of the song.
RSTW is just better than WSTW, the band could have mastered the original, hell maybe even just re-relased the damn thing, but instead they lifted they rebuilt album, bones and all to release the album that they wanted to all those years ago, a fine addition and sonically correct leaf in the bands book thus far. The perfect example of this is album closer “Carolyn” which, on a cellular level, is a massive improvement over the original version, and I strongly urge you to check this beautiful song out.
I don’t think the album will win new fans over, and I don’t think it was meant to, but for existing fans, it is a real treat to hear what the band always intended for these songs to be presented - upfront and in your face with their charming naive eccentricity, adolescent rage, and most importantly, as with all BVB albums; the downright undeniable melody. Black Veil Brides are songwriters who write great songs (if you’re into this sort of thing of course) This was the case for them 10 years ago without a pot to piss in, and is still the case now after all this time.
Again; I am not Snide. Check the album out.