Always willing to challenge themselves, The Devil Wears Prada began to embrace a hard rock tinged sound with their 2019 full-length, ‘The Act’, but come 2021 and in the midst of an ongoing global pandemic, the Ohio troupe have taken a detour relative to the current circumstances.
Inspired by the COVID-19 pandemic, the sextet have revisited their 2010 ‘Zombie’ EP, and have created an aptly named sequel to the fan-favourite effort, ‘Zombie II’ (or simply ‘ZII’). Here, we see the band deliver arguably their heaviest work in years without sounding like they’re treading water.
From the get go, ‘Nightfall’ sinks its teeth into an auditory assault of low growls, gruff screams, chugging guitars, and hammered drums. Twisting through time signatures, thick breakdowns, and duelling vocals, ‘Nightfall’ delivers a thunderous and fast paced introduction to the EP, with the energetic nature setting the tone for a mosh pit ready set of tracks.
The same can be said for both ‘Forlorn’ and ‘Termination’, where vocalists Mike Hranica and Jeremy DePoyster work in tandem against hard hitting guitars and ferocious drumming. Whilst both tracks are rooted firmly in bone rattling metalcore, there are moments of reprieve, found in DePoyster‘s clean vocals and Jonathan Gering‘s synths respectively.
Benefitting from the tight runtime, the record doesn’t dip in energy, as the throbbing industrial bite of ‘Nora’ gives way to the the soaring yet crushing ‘Contagion’. Starting sparser and focusing on DePoyster‘s voice, the track soon unfurls with riffs and dominating growls before delivering a devastating breakdown for good measure.
A bold move for the group, ‘Zombie II’ dives into the heavier side of The Devil Wears Prada with impressive results, as the sextet continue to explore their sound and capabilities on their own terms.