The Devil Wears Prada’s highly influential and quite possibly biggest release of their careers turned ten years old today. With Roots Above And Branches Below catapulted the band into metalcore stardom and the ‘it’ band of the late 00s grabbing Alternative Press’ band of the year award in 2009.
The Devil Wears Prada also made a post on Twitter about it:
This was also the height of metalcore on the Vans Warped Tour and they definitely left their marks on the festival during these years of the album’s release and tour cycle. The Devil Wears Prada did get a start early on the celebrating of With Roots with a ten-year tour at the end of 2018.
Going back to revisit this record ten years later, does it still hold up and sound just as good now as it did when it was in it’s prime for the genre? We think so. Mike Hranica quite possibly sounds the best on this record than any other one in the band’s catalog (the Zombie EP doesn’t count here) and Jeremy Depoyster’s clean vocals deliver on point. I think the reason this record holds up and showcases them at their best is because shortly after this, we began to see key members leave the band over the next few records, not saying the band lost it, but there seems to be a tightness and purity here on With Roots that sort of drops off some as they progress. However, with new music coming from the band, we know they are planning some stuff they haven’t done on a The Devil Wears Prada record.
Sassafras kicks off the record with intensity and a soaring chorus and immediately at the song’s end, it wastes no time kicking right into I Hate Buffering. The breakdowns throughout hit hard and don’t let up, not to mention the moments of breathing such as the opening of Assitant To The Regional Manager and the soothing calm ballad Louder Than Thunder which also possibly showcases Jeremy Depoyster at his most vulnerable.
Breakdowns For Jesus
The Devil Wears Prada in some ways still promote a faith-based message, but on the progressive side of the faith such as denouncing President Trump, supporting same-sex marriage, to name a few. When this record was released though, part of their appeal was that they were one of the faces of the Christian metalcore genre that exploded during this time as well. Not to mention for some reason, Ohio was the hotbed for these bands and producer Joey Sturgis crafted these sounds and bands’ and left his mark on the scene as well.
This record showcases the lyrical time of this time of Christian metalcore with lyrics such as “All glory to the one in existence/bring upon your name/your grace/your everything” on Assistant To The Region Manager and on Danger Wildman it opens with “I know a ghost/
And when doubted his truth reveals incredible vengeance” along with the closer Lord Xenu which screams “False statements/fall to the feet of dead gods”.
If you have yet to listen to this record, stream it below: