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Black Veil Brides - Wretched And Divine: The Story Of The Wild Ones (Album Review)

Monday, 14 January 2013 Written by Heather McDaid
Black Veil Brides - Wretched And Divine: The Story Of The Wild Ones (Album Review)

Few bands seem to divide the masses nowadays quite like California's own Black Veil Brides. Openly on a quest for world domination, the band opted to challenge themselves with their third record by conquering the rock opera concept album, with an accompanying movie for those so inclined. And so, we turn to the highly anticipated 'Wretched and Divine: The Story of the Wild Ones'.

ImageIt has to be said, Black Veil Brides - love them or hate them - are fearless and uncompromising. Not ones to cower under scrutiny, they've pushed themselves further than ever before as Andy Biersack opens the album with 'Exordium', a religion-fuelled sermon, before bleeding effortlessly into 'I Am Bulletproof'. Even this early on, some of the many repetitive compliments rears their heads - they've pushed themselves onto new territory, in the sense that this seems to embody a hard rock branch of their sound, and they pack in a mighty catchy chorus. 'New Year's Day' follows suit; though it features less technical guitar work to its predecessor it simply feels huge, the first massive track designed for a live setting.

The track also brings to light the other main draw of the record - the string enhancement. What rock opera would be complete without the violins? Where many bands force new sounds into their own tracks, Black Veil Brides seem to have utilised it where necessary, enhancing something each time it is used. There is no finer example of string work enhancement than the 'F.E.A.R.' transmissions, each playing backdrop to Aiden's own William Francis, narrating the story's progression with his looming and poetic tones.

And while those transmissions are strong points in the concept's narrative, they also highlight the biggest flaw. Without knowledge of the specific story, the record itself proves difficult to follow in terms of a story without William's interruptions. Too much of the plot itself relied on his words.

But, stepping aside from the flaws in following the story, there is another issue to nitpick. 'Done For You' slows the album's pace a little too much, to the point of feeling dull. This, however, is an anomaly as the majority of the record brings to life a new chapter in the band's short lived story. They've challenged themselves - 'Shadows Die' mixes heaviness and operatic stylings and it feels that this track is what the album was set to encompass, and it is great. 'Days Are Numbered' is another blinding high point, while 'In The End' brings every little nuance - from the hard rock direction to the anthemic feel and youthful choir - together, in turn showing what the band are capable of.

The translation of the concept in the music doesn't flow together, personally, and a large number of people will have written the album off without a listen purely because of the name behind it. But there is something there, and it can prove something largely enjoyable. At the very least, it shows once again that Black Veil Brides are fearless and dead set on taking over the world, and they're doing a damn good job at it.

'Wretched And Divine: The Story Of The Wild Ones' was released on January 7th via Lava Records/Island Records UK. Black Veil Brides return to the UK in February for their 'Church Of The Wild Ones' tour.

Black Veil Brides UK & Ireland Tour Dates are as follows:

Sun February 3rd 2013 - University Great Hall, Cardiff
Mon February 4th 2013 - Academy, Manchester
Tue February 5th 2013 - O2 Academy Bristol, Bristol
Thu February 7th 2013 - Guildhall, Southampton
Fri February 8th 2013 - UEA, Norwich
Sat February 9th 2013 - O2 Academy Liverpool, Liverpool
Sun February 10th 2013 - O2 Academy Glasgow, Glasgow
Tue February 12th 2013 - O2 Academy Newcastle, Newcastle
Wed February 13th 2013 - O2 Academy Sheffield, Sheffield
Thu February 14th 2013 - O2 Academy Birmingham, Birmingham
Fri February 15th 2013 - O2 Academy Brixton, London

Click Here to Compare & Buy Black Veil Brides Tickets at Stereoboard.com.


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