New album from Christian metal-core band carries volume, aggression
By fusing the finest elements of American metal-core and European melodic metal, Dayton, Ohio’s the Devil Wears Prada are living the heavy music dream: delivering metal with a slight facelift to the next generation of headbangers. To do this, the guys have depended on pieces with real substance, not a manufactured, glossy image or facade, as is evident in 2006’s debut, Dear Love: A Beautiful Discord, and their following releases. On the band’s latest exertion, Dead Throne (out Sept. 13), they continue with their distinct songwriting and tactful balance between melody and aggressiveness from the onset, with fast-paced, ear-bleeding openers “Dead Throne” and “Untidaled.”
The title track gradually crescendos with a milieu heavy strings and synths until lead screamer Mike Hranica’s dense growl breaks in, blaring the Christian group’s accusations: “What you hold dear is a false account / What you hold dear offers no salvation / Trust in that I’m not right for this / Know that I’m not the one to hold you up / I can’t hold you. I can’t hold you.”
Track number three, “Mammoth,” is the closest thing to a rock song you’ll find from the Devil Wears Prada, per crunching guitars and stunning power riffing. Later in the 13-track release, the mild-mannered interlude of “Chicago” slows things down for a moment, after which the relentlessly brutal “Constance” really hammers and pushes, stacking riff upon riff of into every second. “Holdfast,” the closing tune, begins with a classic, elongated metal guitar passage and breaks down into a head-bopping (or, banging) chorus with scaling guitar lines.
The Devil Wears Prada’s musical variety and reliance on dynamic breakdowns and choruses keeps the listener very engaged throughout Dead Throne, and although it’s hard to follow just what Hranica is screaming, it’s clear the band wants to spread a message through their sheer ambush of sound. Dead Throne is a complete collection of chaos and, in this case, volume and aggression are cause for celebration.
Ink Rating: 4 out of 5 Guitar Splatters
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