Monthly Archives: April 2013

The Ringleader

Three words.

The. Venetia. Fair.

I’m a strong believer of “We’re all quite mad here” theology, because everyone’s got some problem or some sort of insanity bottled up inside of them; whether it’s depression, angry, or just plain crazy. I feel like that’s where a lot bands are missing their real edge. These days, they focus on the emotion that any basic teenagers could relate to. Sadness, heart-break, anger.

But The Venetia Fair takes the elements of “emo”, “theater” and “rock and roll” and puts in their own insanity that just rips through me. On their song “Ringleader”, which is my favorite, they have this bridgepiece in between the verses, where the keyboardist just slams down on the instrument. Many people complained about it, but I found it almost addicting. The chaos of it is intriguing, and it isn’t just “The Ringleader” that has it.

“The Circus” is their 2009 album but the whole album is fantastic. It’s energetic and beautifully crazy. Their lyrics are like one huge metaphor. I think it’s amazing and anyone who’s looking for a new favorite band should check them out.


Radium Rollercoaster

Pierce The Veil: Collide With The Sky

When post-hardcore, “mexicore” Californian band Pierce The Veil released the first single of their 2012 album Collide With the Sky, I was more than excited. It was energetic, it was innovative, and it was a damned good pairing. These things get painfully boring though, if it all sounds the same. With the music scene that surrounds bands like Pierce The Veil (and Kellin Quinn’s band, Sleeping With Sirens), it’s hard to be different and capture the attention of a teenage crowd for a whole album.

The power of the composition of these songs and the other wonderful vocal pairings make each song meaningful, unique, and still completely entrancing. The introduction song, “May These Noises Startle You In Your Sleep” is a lulling entrance to the energetic first track “Hell Above”, which has driving power chords and definitely is a moshing song- for those of you that are interested. What interests me much more, however, is the song that followed it.

“A Match Into Water” has my favorite drum part in the whole album, and some of the most phenomenal lyrics I’ve heard in a long time. In an interview I saw that Vic wrote this about an ex-girlfriend of his that contracted cancer and it hits home for many girls that self-harm. The vocals- clean and screams- are increasingly beautiful from the first line to the ending. It doesn’t do it justice to put it directly preluding “King For A Day”, however.

The song “Bulls in the Bronx”, their second single, shouldn’t have been a single in my opinion. It’s got a great guitar and bass part, but the drums seem almost TOO loud during the verses. The style of the vocals in the choruses is really catchy though, and the bridge has a mariachi sound that it funny but kind of beautiful at the same time. “Props & Mayhem” starts out with a softer, slower distorted guitar sound, like a bouncing serenade. I like some of the phrases- both lyrically and vocally- and think it definitely balances some of the rest of the album; preventing headaches for the most fragile listeners.

“Tangled in the Great Escape” is one of the most beautiful songs that Pierce the Veil has ever recorded. It takes it’s time in building up, and Jason Butler begins the verse with a unique voice that contrasts Vic’s. The listener can really feel every emotion that’s put into this song. The main musical theme in this song is definitely contrasted: even the structure of the verses, choruses, and the bridge are all very different. It has energy and feeling, and I think it would have to be my favorite on this record because of how surprising it is from beginning to end.

“I’m Low on Gas and You Need a Jacket” seems like a post-hardcore ballroom song, slow and dancing. It’s completely composed of clean vocals, and a bridge of particularly cruel yet humorous lyrics. “The First Punch” is completely the opposite, with fast guitar and galloping drums. There’s a good split of clean vocals and screams, with a driving chorus. “One Hundred Sleepless Nights” bounces like a tango, but other than that I actually don’t think it’s very special; the lyrics are good but nothing surprising from this band.

“Stained Glass Eyes and Colorful Tears” starts out like a Panic! At The Disco song, and I really enjoy the lyrics-especially the chorus. It’s slow and fast at the same time, very dynamic and interesting. I don’t think “Hold On Till May” should have closed the album, especially because it has more of a pop-punk sound that isn’t really befitting to the album as a whole. Although yes, Lindsey Stamey does a great job on her verses.

All in all, I think this album is amazing. It shows how diverse Pierce The Veil is and exhibits their strengths and weaknesses. It’s going amongst my favorite records so far from any band- along with Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge. I hope you decide to take a listen, enjoy it, and possible buy the album yourself!

Xoxo, Radium Rollercoaster