The Listener Wears Earplugs
The Devil Wears Prada is a band that needs little introduction, due to their abundant popularity. With just four studio albums and an EP, the American metalcore outfit have managed to obtain over 2 million likes on Facebook, get signed to Roadrunner Records and have even earned spots on the Billboard 200. They are so loved due to their heavy guitars, melodic singing and aggressive vocals. Their newest release, entitled 8:18, is an album that is likely to leave a large portion of metal fans scratching their heads, rather than headbanging.
To start, this album does have positive aspects. In the first place, the guitars sound fairly well done. Though there’s nothing special about the songwriting, the instruments sound heavy and every once in a while, a pretty catchy riff is found. The bass also has a pleasing, crunchy edge to it, giving the tracks a satisfying hardcore feel. Additionally, the band makes use of electronic elements. They are not heavily abundant, but when they do show up they are not subtle and give the music a distinguishing aspect that sounds fantastic.
Unfortunately, the negative characteristics dominate throughout the album. The vocals are where 8:18 disappoints the most. The shouted vocals are a failed attempt at sounding extreme, when it fact the atmosphere they give off is teenage angst, rather than sinister. Additionally, they’ve included clean vocals to the tracks. Songs such as “Black & Blue” contain clean vocals reminiscent of typical radio pop music, more suited for a Britney Spears album rather than an extreme metal album. Undoubtedly, that’s the biggest turn off 8:18 contains, but the songwriting comes in at a close second. The riffs are constructed so predictably and poorly that they hardly contain any character. In fact, they sound nearly identical to the rest of the “chug chug” mid tempo breakdowns the majority of metalcore acts already create.
All in all, The Devil Wears Prada’s new offering is one to avoid and steer clear of if hearing good music is your goal. Their recycled songwriting and whiny clean vocals taint the music quite successfully. Finding amazing metal music isn’t difficult, so looking elsewhere is highly suggested.