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Album Review: The Devil Wears Prada ‘8:18’

One of the best bands to hit the scene in recent year are, The Devil Wears Prada. The band is set to release their fifth studio album 8:18. 8:18 is the long-awaited follow-up to 2011’s full length effort by the band, Dead Throne and 2010’s masterful, Zombie EP. This album picks up were those to works left off, and continues to push the boundaries of what this band is capable of doing. The sound is dark and more mature, and we guarantee you’re in for a great ride from track one through thirteen.

8:18 starts off with the slow-moving synth driven intro to the track “Gloom.” However “Gloom” picks up it’s pace at the 50 second mark when the band comes in and provides a bruising intro. “Gloom” almost seems like a mission statement from the band, telling the listener what they have in store for the rest of the album. The drums, guitars, synth, and vocals work well on this track. The next riff that will hit you is the intro to the second track “Rumors” which is a bruising riff, but it slows downs in the verse which is atmospheric, but we hear the first hint of melody in this tracks chorus.

“First Sight” is the third track on the record, and it hits you like a brick wall from the beginning, but then as the track moves on you hear the song grow into this melodic juggernaut in the chorus. The stand out of this track however are the guitars which are tight, but leave enough room in the mix for the track to breathe.

The next track that caught my attention was the album’s title track, 8:18 which has a beautiful clean intro which is interrupted by vocalist Mike Hranica’s primal screams. The next track that really grabbed me was “Care More” which is a real departure for the band which is awesome. They really mixed it up with this one showing what they can do both vocally and with arranging.

Next thing you know theirs a bell chiming and this signals the intro to the track, “Martyrs” which was one of the first tracks that fans got to hear from this record. This track is great and is a real throw back to the Dead Throne sound that I and TDWP fans love. “Black and Blue” starts with an ominous intro that sends the message that mayhem is about to unfold, and it does and this mayhem continues throughout the rest of the record concluding with the thirteenth and final track, “ In Heart.”

Overall I believe that 8:18 is the next step in The Devil Wears Prada’s evolution. This record is excellent. One of the best metal records of the year.

-B. Harlow

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Mayhem, Dunk Tanks, and The Jackson 5. Our Interview with The Devil Wears Prada’s Daniel Williams

Over the last month or so, many metal fans have been patiently waiting for the 5th annual Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival. Right before the tour started I got the opportunity to speak with Daniel Williams from The Devil Wears Prada. During our conversation we talked about the weather, Mayhem fest, dunk tanks, and the band’s latest releases, Dead Throne and Dead & Alive.

Musically Diversified: You guys are about to take off on your first Mayhem Festival starting June 30th in San Bernadino, CA. Are you excited to be on a different summer festival after doing Warped?

Daniel Williams: I absolutely am. There are a lot of bands that I’m really into. Good to do something new.

MD: Do you think you’ll reach a Different fan base by performing at this year’s Mayhem?

Williams: I definitely do. Bands like Slipknot, Slayer, and such have a much different fan base than us. I’m sure we share some fans, but we’ll definitely play to people that have never heard us before, so I’m excited.

MD: Since we’re on the subject of summer festivals, what’s your favorite summer festival memory?

Williams: In 2008 when we played a festival in Toronto or Montreal, they had a dunk tank. Mike (Hranica) and I for some reason decided to climb up to it and let people dunk us for some money. It was a really bad idea because it was freezing cold and I was only in my underwear.

MD: You released Dead Throne in 2011, and have been touring behind it since. What was your favorite song off the album and your favorite to play live?

Williams: My favorite off the album I’d have to say is, “Mammoth” which is track three. My favorite song to play live is “Untidaled” because it’s a little faster, challenging, and fun to play. All of them are really fun to play though.

MD: Adam D. from Killswitch Engage worked on that album, what was it like working with him?

Williams: That was actually really cool. We toured with them on their headline tour, and Adam would come out and watch our set. We started joking around with him about working with us, and he said ok. Before we knew it we were in the studio with Adam and he was chopping up our songs and giving us some tips. I’m super happy with Dead Throne, so I hope we get to work with him again.

MD: Was it good as a drummer to work with someone who also plays drums?

Williams: It’s kind of frustrating actually because he’s really good at everything he does. You’d be playing something, and he’d just say ‘Nope’, and it was annoying to know he could just come in and do it himself perfectly. At the same time, he definitely pushes you to be a better musician.

MD : Your new CD/DVDDEAD&ALIVE was filmed in my hometown at the Worcester Palladium. ;What went into choosing the Palladium as the venue for the new DVD.

Williams: We always have really good shows in Worcester. We’ve played the Palladium many times before, and every time we go the crowd is always crazy. It’s also a really cool looking venue and has a lot of history. I’m stoked we did though, because the DVD came out great, and everybody looks like they had a good time.

MD: We at musically diversified try to cover a lot of genres. What is the most surprising thing from a different genre than the music that you play that is on your Ipod?

Williams: Maybe the Jackson 5! Actually, surprisingly to a lot of fans I don’t listen to a lot of metal. Mostly I listen to a lot of indie rock like Bright Eyes.

-B. Harlow

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The Devil Wears Prada’s New live Album/DVD, ‘Dead & Alive’

Following their release of their album Dead Throne, The Devil Wears Prada decided to film a show at The Palladium in Worcester, MA and release it as a Live DVD/Album. To say the results came out well is a truly an understatement. The band sounds well-rehearsed, tight, and most of all like they were having fun. To me it was also awesome that the band released the audio to that show as a live album.

Let’s dig into the set the band played that night. Opening the night you had the song, “Dead Throne” off the album of the same name. To me it is a good opener because it’s a very groove oriented heavy song that can get a crowd going. The second track was entitled, “Untidaled,” to me this was also a good choice because it is off their new record and because it’s very high-tempo, which is what you want when you’re trying to grasp on to an audience. The third song, “Escape” was the first appearance of anything off of one of my favorite TDWP releases, Zombie.

Jumping up a couple of tracks we had my all-time favorite TDWP song, “Mammoth.” The song which is very heavy starts off with a very simple chugged riff, but what I love about this song is the clean vocal chorus, there’s something very uplifting about it.  Next up is the song “Kansas.” This song starts off slow, but you know it’s the calm before the storm, only to climax and come back down and provide amazing contrast to the crowd pleasing, “Hey John, What’s Your Name Again?”

One of my favorite things about TDWP is their amazing lyrics. One of the best lyrics I’ve ever heard comes from their song, “Vengeance,” when  Jeremy DePoyster  sings, “It’s gone a little too far to turn back now./ It’s gone a little too far to turn back./ Always running I am the outcast./ Keep running, keep running away.” That simple verse says so much about so many situations. It’s clear that the audience clearly related to the lyrics, as they can be seen during the song moshing and singing every word.

Next up was, “Outnumbered” another groove oriented song from, Zombie. Although it’s not my favorite on the album it’s definitely up there with some of TDWP’s best material.  As is the song, “Chicago,” which can be found in the encore section of the set. I like the dynamics in the song because it slowly builds up and leads into, “Constance” perfectly. The last song on Dead and Alive, is the crowd pleasing, “Danger: Wildman” which was a perfect way for the guys to end the set.

I’d also like to take note of the terrific production. It’s very hard to get live recordings to sound good, but it seems like the sound engineers and producer got the mix just right.

-B. Harlow

Check Out The Live Performance of “Vengeance Below”:

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