Introduction: As DevilDriver’s fourth full length studio album they are looking to once again pen their way into the books of heavy metal. With thirteen tracks showing up on this release, DevilDriver is trying hard to top their previous release ‘The Last Kind Words‘ which shook the metal community with one of the strongest releases of 2007. Sit back and enjoy DevilDriver’s new release ‘Prey For Villains‘.
Good: I’ve always described DevilDriver to people as mediocre metal with the most amazing drums you’ve ever heard over top. That formula has, for the most part, held true in this edition to the DevilDriver roster. The drums are definitely the focal point in this album. Really tight kick sound, amazing cymbal work, pronounced toms, and a deep loud snare. The vocals haven’t really strayed in any new direction. Why fix what isn’t broken, eh. The guitars are taking a more old school progression this time. Lots of southern riffs, scratches, slides, and the signature clean delayed melodies have come back. These are by far my favourite moments in the guitars of DevilDriver. You’ll know what I mean when you hear it.
Some notable songs to consider checking out on this album are ‘Prey For Villains‘, ‘I’ve Been Sober‘, ‘Waiting For November‘, and ‘Another Night In London‘. If you don’t at least check out at least one of these songs you have missed some of the greatest heavy metal this year.
Bad: I have always felt that DevilDriver could rule the world if they wrote a little more intense and elaborate songs. The drums and vocals really set this band apart from everything else and make it truly amazing. The guitars on the other hand, while always impressive, always leave some riffs to be desired. Vocally some songs on ‘Prey For Villains‘, it feels like he’s trying way too hard to be different. Good on him for attempting to keep it fresh, but it at times sounds really weird. Which, weirdly enough, both of my gripes are on the same songs. ‘It’s In The Cards‘ and ‘Back With Vengeance‘ both suffer from both of these. The only song on the CD I don’t like is ‘‘I See Belief‘. The chorus of the song is tolerable, but everything else I just can’t stand. Weird time signatures, time changes, and bad transitions make this song my ‘avoid this song‘ choice for this CD. It only makes sense this is the last song on the CD.
Conclusion: DevilDriver keeps the heavy metal fans of 2009 happy one more year with a solid release. It does have some things keeping it back from being a total ‘Must Buy‘, but I highly recommend anyone who has never heard of this band to check out all of their CD’s. Constant solid performances by the drummer and vocalist like you’ve never heard. I will most definitely be reviewing a previous release of theirs in the future. If you’re already a fan I highly recommend you pick this one up. If you’re just a passer by, I think you should research the great songs before you make the final purchase.
DevilDriver’s ‘Prey For Villains’ gets 3.5 creepy horned owls out of 5.
*I have the limited edition CD with four bonus tracks, but only reviewing based on the ‘original’ CD track list*
September 7th, 2009