The Devil Wears Prada: Dead Throne

There’s just no stopping these guys is there? The Devil Wears Prada are a fantastic example of a band that consistently get better and better with every record the release. After the widely celebrated “With Roots Above and Branches Below” album, The Devil Wears Prada release, the “Zombie EP”, the best thing that the band have done to date, in my opinion and now they’ve released an album that is on a the same plane as the “Zombie EP”. The album literally takes place where the EP left off and from there on out, the band plow through with the most complex and the most brutal album of the bands career thus far.

I was actually surprised when I heard that Adam D of Killswitch Engage and Times of Grace fame was going to be producing this record because for the most part, everything that Adam D produces sounds a lot like Killswitch Engage or has that very generic metalcore production sound to it. Adam D’s not a bad producer, but when it comes to most projects, it seems like he tries to make the record the Killswitch never made. Regardless, Adam D is making a huge statement and a big name for himself with this record. This album is so rich and heavy and technically spot on, I can’t help but grin from ear to war when I listen to it because i’m so proud of how far the band have come to make this record and how much of a step up this is for Adam D. Great job to both band and production.

Much like what I said about the vocal duo between Kyle and Dave in We Came As Romans, the vocal duo between Mike Hranica (lead vocals) and Jeremy Depoyster (clean vox/rhythm gtr) is a very strong combination, especially on this record. When it comes to metalcore, placing the clean and unclean vocals can be very strategic and when done properly, it increases the album ten fold. Trivium’s new record did just that splendidly, as well as Bullet for My Valentine’s “Poison” record. The piercing vocals of Mike cut through the record a like wolverine through skin and then Jeremy ‘s clean vocals contrast the song so well that it helps to amplify the intricacies that the guitars are performing underneath.

This new album is just miles ahead of everything else they’ve done and a massive departure from what the band have done previously, adding in more intricate and complex melodies and guitar riffs as well as more mature vocal themes and song structures. This will certainly leave a huge impression on longtime fans as well as new fans who will most likely be drawn to this new, darker image. It’s also refreshing to hear the band expanding and reinventing the wheel because, lets face it, the whole post hardcore/metalcore genre can  be a bit inflated and can get stale very quickly, forcing bands to reinvent themselves. This record does just that, taking the ideas of “With Roots Above and Branches Below” and completely flipping it on its side and injecting it with steroids.

Some noteworthy songs to keep in mind include “Mammoth”, “Vengeance”, “My Questions”, and “Born to Lose” . All of which are filled with fat power chords that could crush a car, ear-piercing vocals from Mike as well as his deep growls, sludgy bass lines and a heart-pounding drum set sound. I really wish I saw the band at Warped Tour this year when I had the chance, but I might go see the band in Dcember because they are coming around with Whitechapel, Enter Shikari, and For Today (a bit of a mixed bag, but I love all those bands so i’m not complaining at all).  These songs are so huge that I can’t wait to hear how well they will translate to the live stage.

Anyway, like I said, if you are or have ever been a fan of this band, then you should find this album extremely enjoyable as well as impressionable and brutal. Warning: not for the faint hearted. Mainly recommended for fans of August Burns Rd, Attack Attack!, Miss May I, and Underoath. Congratulations to the Devil Wears Prada for making one of the best records of 2011. This will make the construction of my top 20 albums of 2011 so much harder because there are sooooo many phenomenal albums being released this year.

Good job and keep up the good work guys,

Luke Helker


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