Chances are, before reading this review, you’re already got an opinion on Black Veil Brides. That rubbish band who wear all the make-up and have a fan-base made up entirely of teenage girls. Sound familiar? Thought so. But believe it or not, you couldn’t be more wrong about Black Veil Brides.
Their third studio album, Wretched and Divine: The Story of the Wild Ones, may still see the band dolled up in war paint, but thankfully their music is distracting (and good) enough that you needn’t focus too much on that. Out of the 19-strong songs that make up this ambitious rock-opera concept record, the bulk demonstrates that Black Veil Brides have finally created something worth paying attention to. Whether it’s the massive chorus of lead single In The End, the Avenged Sevenfold-esque riffs off Nobody’s Hero, or the “5, 4, 3, 2 – woahhh!”s of New Year’s Day, Wretched and Divine is both surprisingly powerful, and fully engaging.
Having said that, the fact that Wretched and Divine is a concept album in its truest sense unfortunately means that the tedious interludes and pointless fillers really make it drag. Take the 14 second ‘Abeyance’ for example... Is it really worth having a song that is 14 seconds long? Not really. It’s a shame, because – along with the spoken word 3-part lull of F.E.A.R (featuring a certain William Control) – it means the brilliance of the ‘actual’ songs is disregarded somewhat.
This album is by no means revolutionary, but it is thoroughly enjoyable. It turns out that behind Black Veil Brides’ make-up is a bunch of genuinely talented dudes just wanting to play great music. So don’t judge this book by its cover, and give Wretched and Divine a bloody good listen. You probably won’t find your new favourite band, but you might find another band to stick onto your iPod.