It seems like the whole entertainment industry is on a zombie kick now a days with multiple movies, books, and video games. Now it has entered the world of heavy music and The Devil Wears Prada jumped all over it. TDWP is following up their spectacular 2009 release With Roots Above and Branches Below with a five track EP entitled Zombie. Vocalist Mike Hranica said the EP was inspired by Max Brooks’ book The Zombie Survival Guide, which he recently finished reading.
All the tracks have zombie themes but some go much deeper. For instance, the track “Survivor” is about a man who loses his love to zombie and spends the rest of his life battling zombies and loneliness. While you may recognize these tracks instantly as classic Prada, you will also notice that the EP is a bit faster and more aggressive than their previous work. Guitarist/vocalist Jeremy DePoyster explains that the EP draws some influence from Hatebreed and some Slayer typed thrash guitar riffs. Another thing that I noticed about the EP is that there are not as many clean vocals from DePoyster on the EP. I have never really been a big fan of clean vocals in general in heavy music; however, I have always liked Depoyster’s vocals.
I personally really like this EP. I have talked to some other friends at other zines that have an advance copy of the EP as well that think that this EP is not really anything special and maybe a little boring. I however, believe this EP shows the growing maturity of Prada. Hranica’s vocals seem to be to be more mature and darker. I have always loved his vocal range that shifts between the lower and higher growls within the same track. In addition, as stated above Prada has taken their musicianship in a new direction by adding some thrash and increasing the speed and aggressiveness to their style. This shows me that Prada is not a band that is just going to continue doing the same old thing but is willing to experiment with their style and take chances. I think that is key to a band’s continued success.
My favorite songs on this EP are their first single “Outnumbered” and “Survivor” due to the aggressive nature of the track, and I also love the vocals of Hranica and DePoyster. If Zombie is any indication of things to come, then TDWP’s next full-length that hopefully hits in 2011 will be amazing.
Overall: This is a great EP that shows the maturity and excellence of The Devil Wears Prada. If you have been a fan of TDWP, then this is an EP you must pick up. TDWP continues their style of metalcore that has propelled them to the upper echelon of the genre and they show no sign of letting up anytime soon.