Congratulations To Our Winners! Your Goodie Bags Are On Their Way!
We set you guys the challenge of reviewing the awesome new Black Veil Brides IV album and you did a great job, so much so that we could not decide on just one winner and instead have picked two! All of the reviews we received were brilliant but these two really stood out. Enjoy!
When frontman Andy Biersack and bassist Ashley Purdy sat down with Charged.fm to talk about their fourth self- titled studio album, both referred to it as ‘genuine’.
Upon listening to the first release since their heavily based concept album ‘Wretched and Divine’ in 2013, it’s easy to see where the two are coming from.
Here, there is little in the way of a story line or ideas that the band have had to adhere to throughout the writing and recording process. These are honest, open, hard- rock songs that immediately strike a chord with listeners.
With ‘Black Veil Brides’, the band have essentially shied away from the concepts of theatricality that they’ve become known for and gone onto produce what can only be described as a great and compelling rock n’ roll album.
‘Heart of Fire’ and ‘Faithless’ were the first tracks to be released in October and from Biersack’s gritty vocals to the indescribable talent of guitarists Jinxx and Jake Pitts, it’s everything you could expect from a Black Veil Brides song- powerful, engaging and anthemic in many respects.
Throughout the album, the bands consistent progress is visible and it quickly becomes apparent just how beautifully dynamic Black Veil Brides can be.
Where the vocal style in ‘Stolen Omen’ is more reminiscent of the band’s first release, ‘We Stitch These Wounds’ (2010), the integration of strings and piano in ‘Walk Away’ provides a stark contrast with a sound that’s closer to a ballad.
Lyrically, the band remain as eloquent and defiant as ever in the way they write, examples of which are found in every track on the record. ‘Devil In The Mirror’ is particularly hard- hitting, seemingly written with critics of the band in mind. ‘Screaming that my heart is strong. I’m never gonna let you win’ exudes the pride, courage and resilience to adversity that has stayed with BVB (and their fan-base) since their beginning.
Similarly, you can imagine the striking gang vocals heralding the beginning of ‘Drag Me To The Grave’ being a instant crowd- pleaser. ‘Rising up I’m a fighter, young and loud with desire’, seems to be an apt description of the BVB army.
Overall, everything is bigger. The drums are heavier, the guitars more visceral and all blend seamlessly with Biersack’s smooth, baritone vocals.
With the inclusion of orchestras and choirs, the album is constructed in such a way that it wouldn’t be out of place in arenas, compared to the smaller rock venues BVB performed in on their recent UK tour.
Going through Black Veil Brides’ back catalogue, there has been a massive progression since their debut in 2010. No matter how much BVB push themselves on every album, they always seem to go that bit further on the next release. Their sheer talent and drive has taken them to dizzying heights and fans and critics alike are equally excited and intrigued to see what they’ll come up with next.
by Emma Bolland
Being the creator of your own future is an ethos Andy Biersack has always held close. Since beginning Black Veil Brides in 2006 the band has worked hard, amassing a following of dedicated fans by standing up for those who feel outcasted. Often put down for expressing their own taste BVB continue to grow an army, or legion, of supporters encouraging them to face the fear of existence head on and embrace their own uniqueness. Holding onto the idea that you should believe in yourself because being happy comes from doing the things you love, is exactly the individual spirit and pure rock joy that new self titled album Black Veil Brides IV represents.
Although each Black Veil Brides record has shown changes in sound and style, no band would want to sit still, IV is Black Veil Brides at their technical best. They’re writing has grown in confidence as much as their fan base. Having faced their demons they’re charging forwards together. IV is the sound of true friendship; often dark and heavy but equally blindingly bright and wonderfully exuberant. Black Veil Brides are a force of nature that just can’t be resisted. Once you give their infectious metal the time it deserves you’ll be hooked; proved by the band’s merch becoming Grindstore’s biggest seller of 2014!
Continuing the stripped back makeup of 2013’s ‘Wretched and Divine’ IV takes a step away from the mask of characters. With no strong storyline to cling to it feels even more personal. Filled with emotionally open lyrics, and Andy’s religious imagery, which relates to picking yourself up from pain and moving on, the album has an honesty and vulnerability bound to resonate. Tracks like the slower tempo ‘Walk Away’ will break hearts with survival sentiment just as much as pure BVB energising with a bitter tongue: ‘Drag me to the grave’ and ‘Devil in the Mirror’s dark yet uplifting pounding drums, mixed with delicately sharp guitar solos, will rock the foundations of every house on your road.
Yes there are the expected empowering singles in the form of ‘Heart of Fire’, a bolt of lightning charged with everything the new album stands for, and ‘Faithless’, which begins with a Metallica style ghostly bell toll slapping across your ears bringing CC’s drums and Ashley Purdy’s bass into blood pressure raising anthemic euphoria, but these are not absent-mindedly shoved into a weak mix of album filler. IV is meant to be listened to from start to finish. A mix of stomping rock classics in songs like, the strong air of Billy Idol, ‘Last Rites’ and faster passed ‘World of Sacrifice’ laced with beautifully poignant tracks reminiscent of Wretched and Divine like the rumbling hope of ‘Goodbye Agony’. These are songs that burn into you like a smouldering fire, erupting in places spitting hot embers deep into your heart. The skill in CC’s drumming and Jinxx and Jake Pitt’s guitar has never had this kind of clarity. With driving arena ready drum clashes and ceaseless rock hooks this is music that will lift you away from worries that are burdening you, stealing you from clouded thoughts and reforming you into a positive reflection of yourself.
All this may seem grandiose but Black Veil Brides have achieved sincerity within IV that is captivatingly addictive. Lovingly crafted with expert hands this album is inescapably, unashamedly good. Working with the legendary Bob Rock has pushed BVB to realize their dream of producing their very own Black Album. Stripping away a little of the bands theatrics could have left some fans dazed and confused but these songs lack none of Black Veils Bride’s heartfelt grit and determination.
IV is threaded with an accepting devotion that will allow it to remain a firm favourite. Although I could cry with how much I love this album IV is Black Veil Brides continuing the fight with smiles on their faces.
by Hayley Miller