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If you’re not into the scene, glam metal isn’t a genre you hear about often. The fact is, it’s far from dead and bands such as Black Veil Brides are keeping it well and truly alive.

The Californian shock-rockers are renowned for their trademark appearance as much as their music, rarely seen without full face paint, long hair and tight black clothing, the kind you’d typically associate with ‘80s icons like KISS or Mötley Crüe. That’s not to say their music doesn’t rock either.

Heart Of Fire hits the ground running. It’s got everything you want, roaring vocals from frontman, Andy Biersack, thumping percussion and wailing guitar licks. The extended intro of Faithless is impressive, using church bells and intense guitar rhythms to full effect. The chanting chorus is reminiscent of 30 Seconds To Mars; the same dynamic continues through Devil In The Mirror.

The intro of Goodbye Agony is haunting, sounding a lot like the Gunners’ November Rain. Things get a bit more intense with World of Sacrifice, shifting back towards heavy bass and riffs. Last Rites is dark and Stolen Omen even darker, with raw backing vocals behind it. The morbid turn is a bold decision that’s paid off for the band. Walk Away is much friendlier in comparison, incorporating piano and strings, an unexpected but refreshing change of pace.

Drag Me To The Grave is a head-banging riot, as is The Shattered God, which gets back to the chanting-style chorus they began with. Crown Of Thorns is a nice finish, utilising some varied guitar effects to end on a high. Their latest album is certainly polished, and you can only imagine with their signature appearance and stage theatrics, it would be even better live.

4 stars

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