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Falling In Reverse - Fashionably Late Album Cover

Falling In Reverse - Fashionably Late

Reviewed by
0.3
Falling In Reverse - Fashionably Late
Record Label: Epitaph Records
Release Date: June 14, 2013

I can't decide how I feel about this album. It's the sad but honest truth that Fashionably Late is not the musical slaughterhouse that I thought it would be. I fully expected to be struggling through the album. I fully expected that I would be wasting a few hours of my day that could be spent doing something much more productive. But, every time I find another thing that I hate about the album, I also find something that I actually enjoy.
So, instead of trying to write some convoluted and possibly incomprehensible review about an album that's just as bad as it is good, I decided to write two reviews. What follows are two completely different views of this album. I agree with both 100%. But, just as a reminder, please take everything said with a grain of salt.

Fashionably Late: The Musical Slaughterhouse

Quote:
"In layman's terms, I am the best / You must agree / I got that white boy swagger rapping right down to a tee / I got my hand up on the throttle, holding up a broken bottle / Ready to cut you up and gut you like a fucking avocado" - Ronnie Radke in "Rolling Stone"
Quote:
"I'm on that rack / Fly like a jet / Switching my lanes like I'm racing a Vette / I'm on that next / Girls love sex / No doubt I'm on top of the world / Break your neck" - Ronnie Radke in "Alone"
Quote:
"I tried to choke my mom with my umbilical cord" - Ronnie Radke in "Fuck the Rest"

Those few lyrical examples could be my review. They honestly wrap up these "songs" in the best way. The lyrics are childish and immature. Taking a look back up at those lyrics in the dub-step induced "Rolling Stone", it is all too apparent how much Radke's songwriting abilities have improved. That is, not at all. I also can't tell whether Ronnie thinks he's the King of the World or just as talented and equal to his fans. In the opener, "Champion", Radke screams, squeals, and spits about how he is the best. Fast forward to the rock-opera "Keep Holding On" and Radke is pleading for people to understand that he is just as human as us listeners.
Worse than that is the constant genre change that this album goes through. The album starts with a hardcore and rap hybrid in "Champion" (a style that is repeated with "Rolling Stone", "Alone", and "Self-Destruct Personality"), but in the very next song, we get to hear Falling In Reverse's best attempt at copying a Forever The Sickest Kids song in "Bad Girls Club". A few songs down the road comes "Game Over", a song that seems like it was plucked straight from an I Fight Dragons album. Oh, and let's not forget the closing track, "Drifter", which is a straight-up western-country number.
Other gripes with Fashionably Late include the revolting sneer in Radke's voice in the title track, which is entirely focused on his adulterous experiences with his girl's (fiance?) best friends, ruining the decent "Keep Holding On" with chug-chug guitars during the last minute, and, just to reiterate something everybody wants to forget, that music video for "Alone". If you haven't seen it, I hope your enjoying sleep, because the rest of us are having nightmares.
Fashionably Late should have never arrived. The lyrics are trash, the attitude and persona of the band is childish, and the constant battering of other genres throughout this effort (used loosely) is embarrassing. Do yourself a favor, and stick with new Escape The Fate. Sadly, they're better.

Fashionably Late: The Musical Fun-house

I will not dismiss or ignore that fact that they lyrics on this album are laughable. Most of the time, the lyrics feel uninspired, thrown together, and absent-minded. But, rarely are they off-putting, "Fashionably Late" being the one exclusion. Yes, Ronnie refers to his opposition as an avocado in "Rolling Stone" and yes, "Bad Girls Club" has one of the cheesiest subjects and the most eye-rolling chants ever produced into a sound, but Ronnie meant it to be this way. Not all the lyrics are written for the sake of creating an infectious hook, though. "It's Over When It's Over" features some actual down to earth lyrics ("I wear my heart up on my sleeve / So my soul's exposed / And I carry this disease / The weight of the holy ghost / God, can you hear me? / God is missing"), and the closing track, "Drifter", actually manages to express Ronnie's emotions in a meaningful way ("My faith is weak / My soul bound / This lonely road I travel down / I scrape my feet / This jagged ground / These cuts run deep into me now"). Now, granted, these things should be second nature when it comes to other bands in this scene. But, to put things in perspective, Kanye West is known for his experimental sound in the hip-hop genre and even he sing about nonessential crap sometimes (Don't believe me? Look at the lyrics of "Mercy" or "Runaway"). Ronnie Radke may not be a lyrical genius, but is it so hard to look past the content and just enjoy the music? This brings me to the sound of Fashionably Late.

If The Drug In Me Is You was any indication, Falling in Reverse does not settle for a generic metalcore sound and that is even more apparent in Fashionably Late. This album tosses around genres and their sounds like a ragdoll in a dog's mouth. Most obvious is the heavy rap influences in many of the songs. "Self-Destruct Personality" displays Ronnie's rapping talents at their best. Other genre concoctions include an infectious pop single in "Bad Girls Club" and a bit-track, video-game infused "Game Over", the latter including an excellent and nostalgic cameo of the Konami Code . Even if it may all be just an attempt at attracting others from all corners of the musical spectrum, Falling In Reverse manages to execute it in the most comical and fun way possible. The is the essential guilty-pleasure.

I know it may seem impossible that I could agree with both of these opinions, but I urge you to see for yourself. This album at least warrants a listen, even from the most advent haters of this band.
This review is a user submitted review from AquaMan. You can see all of AquaMan's submitted reviews here.
 
Displaying posts 1 - 6 of 6
10:59 AM on 07/28/13
#2
justbradley
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Interesting and well written review. Despite not being a huge fan of this band, I did give this record a listen, despite hating "Alone." That song is awful, and I didn't have high hopes for the record. I was slightly surprised, because the songs were a bit ambitious, although executed terribly. I appreciated that there was an attempt at variety, but it was way too much for me to really enjoy. The main thing that I hated about this album was that it was basically a way for Ronnie to talk about how awesome he is, and that's all it is. It's a vanity record from him, and that's it. The "deep" songs and lyrics on the record don't mean too much when it's mostly full of filler. They may not be generic, but there's nothing that makes them memorable, either. There's certainly an appeal for it, so it's great that people enjoy this, but it's just not for me.
01:34 PM on 07/28/13
#3
the seventeenth
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Good review, I completely agree. Sometimes the album is fascinating and fun, and at other times simply confusing and bad.
Also, despite the lyrics, Ronnie's overall rapping talent is kind of impressive....
06:49 PM on 07/28/13
#4
ahriik
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I'll confess, I found myself playing some of the songs over and over again. The lyrics are trashy, Radke's ego is horribly intrusive, but some of the songs on the album are just too fun and catchy to get over.
02:44 PM on 07/29/13
#5
AquaMan
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Interesting and well written review. Despite not being a huge fan of this band, I did give this record a listen, despite hating "Alone." That song is awful, and I didn't have high hopes for the record. I was slightly surprised, because the songs were a bit ambitious, although executed terribly. I appreciated that there was an attempt at variety, but it was way too much for me to really enjoy. The main thing that I hated about this album was that it was basically a way for Ronnie to talk about how awesome he is, and that's all it is. It's a vanity record from him, and that's it. The "deep" songs and lyrics on the record don't mean too much when it's mostly full of filler. They may not be generic, but there's nothing that makes them memorable, either. There's certainly an appeal for it, so it's great that people enjoy this, but it's just not for me.
Yeah, I agree with that. While listening I always had a nagging feeling in the back of my head that the more heartfelt lyrics were not written honestly and instead written just to balance out Ronnie's ego. Thank you for your opinions, I love hearing people's thoughts on this album
02:46 PM on 07/29/13
#6
AquaMan
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Good review, I completely agree. Sometimes the album is fascinating and fun, and at other times simply confusing and bad.
Also, despite the lyrics, Ronnie's overall rapping talent is kind of impressive....
Right? It's somewhat surprising that he's kept that sort of talent out of his previous albums! Now if only he could use that talent to create an actual inspiring message...

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