The members look like the cast offs from a Black Veil Brides We Stitch These Wounds era video shoot, and the music takes all the best elements of the rock scene of the last decade- a little All American Rejects, some Get Scared, a bit of Black Veil Brides, and some Escape the Fate. Case in point: The Relapse Symphony is going to be every Hot Topic dweller's new obsession and there's no use fighting it.
Let's break it down: pretty boy front man, Bret Von Dehl, has pipes that are pitched high enough to be unique but are strong enough to give the band the edge it needs; guitarists JC Charles and Ray Miller create riffs that weave in and out of each other, creating a sense of chaos; bassist Brandon Kile is ferocious, not allowing himself to fall into the background but standing out with strong riffs that metal heavy weights would be proud of; and drummer Alex Foxx ties everything together while still maintaining himself as a powerful drummer. So, they have the musicianship, which, obviously, in incredibly important. But what about those all important lyrics, the things teens scour the album booklets for and write down on their arms and walls with sharpies and paint?
The lyrics are there. They are simple and approachable but still retain the meaning that teens are reaching for. There's nothing really cryptic about them, nothing shrouded in mystery and based on Biblical references or obscure literary quotes. That's what really sets them apart from an act like Black Veil Brides, who pride themselves on prosaic lyrics. And while the latter is more my cup of tea (come on, I'm an AFI fan, I have to love complex lyrics), fans of Escape the Fate and Falling in Reverse will find that these lyrics, while full of meaning, are more to their tastes.
They also have the look and that's probably the most important thing a band can have.
Look, I'm all about sound, but if your members don't have a distinct style or aesthetic appeal, then you're really fighting a losing battle. My Chem knew this, AFI knew this, Black Veil Brides knew this and these guys obviously know this, too. They look like rock stars and in an era dominated by bearded, banjo playing singers, The Relapse Symphony is going to stand out. Their carefully styled, gravity defying hair and pale pallors will surely entice a whole new generation of boys and girls meandering their way through the labyrinthine aisles of Hot Topic and, once those kids hear the unique vocals and approachable lyrics, they'll be hooked.
"Panic (Time's Running Out)"- The Relapse Symphony
So, they have my approval. While they may not be the band I live and breathe, I can appreciate the sound, the look and the ability to look good while hanging out in an abandoned warehouse in the middle of nowhere.