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Review: Pierce The Veil – Selfish Machines

9 September 2010

Sergio reviews Pierce The Veil’s Selfish Machines.

Artist Name: Pierce The Veil
Album Name: Selfish Machines
Year: 2010
Genre: Post-Hardcore/Experimental Rock

The mere mention of the word ‘experimental’ immediately scares off many listeners. Let’s be honest, not many people can appreciate the intricate nature of technical musicianship, blurring of genres or unconventional song structures – some people just like to know what they’re getting and nothing too fancy, much like buying men’s underwear or tupperware. Despite this, I must stress that Pierce The Veil’s Selfish Machines isn’t your stereotypical experimental record, featuring owl noises or atmospheric sounds recorded underneath the highway bridge. Instead it’s a carefully constructed album, which still contains many infectious vocal hooks and musical spots to please sing-along fans (have a listen to ‘Bulletproof Love’ to see what I mean). Think of Selfish Machines as a meeting of minds between My Chemical Romance (prior to The Black Parade era) and Protest The Hero – also, for fans of A Day To Remember, Jeremy McKinnon makes a guest appearance on the track ‘Caraphernelia’; it’s pretty wicked!

Selfish Machines is like an apocalyptic noise explosion of complex sounds and grandeur; the record just feels and sounds so big! So often reviewers discuss the texture and tone of a song or album and the importance of listening to something that captivates all your senses and allows you to “feel it” – this is where Pierce The Veil’s Selfish Machines succeeds. You’ll hear a track, such as ‘The New National Anthem’, which begins with a classical guitar intro and then gets turned into a emotional rocking number, while a track like ‘Besitos’ begins with some lead work reminiscent of AC/DC’s ‘Thunderstruck’ and eventually crescendos to a piano-driven chorus – the album paints many colours and emotions, it’s almost like walking into a musical gallery.

On the negative side, Vic Fuentes’ voice might put off a few people – personally, I enjoy it, but I could understand if someone said he’s a bit too whiny or piercing (no pun intended).

Pierce The Veil possess the same panache that makes Protest The Hero so enjoyable. Despite its sing-along value, there’s almost a zero chance that any of these tracks will hit the radio– but that’s cool with me. Let the radio keep Justin Bieber, while I’ll gladly have Pierce The Veil’s Selfish Machines on my iPod.

Best Tracks: ‘Besitos’, ‘Caraphernelia’, ‘The New National Anthem’, and ‘Disasterology’

90/100

- Sergio Pereira
sergio@musicreview.co.za
www.twitter.com/MusicReviewZA

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