By Kyle Walker
After nearly seven years since their last album release, Pierce The Veil has finally put out their long-awaited “The Jaws Of Life.”
The band had wrapped up their previous tour in 2017, and only started touring again in 2022, supporting I Prevail. During this break, the band went through a lineup change, stayed silent for the most part, and garnered a lot of attention from TikTok.
Now, they are back and coming at full force once again.
“The Jaws Of Life” released on Feb. 10, having three singles leading up to the release. The singles were “Pass The Nirvana,” “Emergency Contact,” and “Even When I’m Not With You,” all of which seemed to show that Pierce The Veil was heading in a new direction with their sound.
This proved to be true upon first listen.
At first I wasn’t a huge fan of these songs. I found the departure from their old sound to be a bad decision for them, but once I was able to see these songs in the context of the album, I quickly changed my mind.
“Death Of An Executioner” kicks off the album and thrusts the listener right into it with plenty of energy, high-gain riffs, and powerful vocals. This song takes their beloved post-hardcore sound and perfectly updates it for the modern era. This is definitely one of the best moments within the album.
The album continues with “Pass The Nirvana” and “Emergency Contact.” They are both strong songs but “Even When I’m Not With You” brings down this section of the album. The instrumentals to this song are lackluster and unwhelming for Pierce The Veil. It interrupts the powerful, steady flow of the beginning of this album.
The middle section of this album is the best section throughout the record. It is packed with raw emotion and is overall masterfully written.
The section begins with “Flawless Execution” in which the title represents my exact thoughts of the song - flawless. The intro riff is a slow chorus effect line that encapsulates the music from the ’90s. The title track “The Jaws Of Life” also closely follows this theme, opening with acoustic guitars and transitioning into big distorted chords.
A lot of this album pays homage to the overall rock and alternative music scene in the ’90s, both in the lyrical and instrumental content. Frontman Vic Fuentes has even stated that some of the material was written in the birthplace of grunge, Seattle, Washington.
Another great example of the ’90s influence is the opening lyrics for “Death Of An Executioner” being “Headlights on your back tonight,” which allude to a scene from Radiohead’s “Karma Police” music video which depicts just that.
“Damn The Man, Save The Empire” closes the middle section and is by far my favorite track on the album. Honestly, this song should have been one of the singles for the album. The chorus is powerful and catchy, and is sure to give you stuck song syndrome.
After this, the remaining few songs didn’t really resonate with me as much as the other content. “Resilience” is a weak track and I find the dialogue in the beginning to be too tacky for my taste.
The record finally concludes with “12 Fractures,” featuring indie pop singer-songwriter Chloe Moriondo. This is a beautiful acoustic duet between Vic and Chloe. I am a huge fan of this collaboration and I think they work very well together in this song.
Packed with plenty of emotion and great moments, “The Jaws Of Life” is a step in the right direction for Pierce The Veil. Their updated sound suits them well and I hope to see more from them similar to this in the future.
B-: An excellent way for the band to return