Andy Black, also known as Andy Biersack of band Black Veil Brides, has made his solo debut with The Shadow Side. The album asserts itself right away with ‘Homecoming King’, where Andy Black’s raw vocals and anguished lyrics are showcased. Early on we’re introduced to, ‘We Don’t Have To Dance’. With its catchy lyrics and pop-but-emo sound, the song is on its way to becoming an anthem.
As the album progresses, some clumsy lyrics take centre stage. In ‘Ribcage’, the awkward phrase “nothing in the cage of my ribcage” is pounded into your mind as every chorus rolls around. Not to be unjust, it is pretty infectious, definitely a song that gets stuck in your head, but that phrasing is a little jarring. The Shadow Side also seems unable to make up its mind: some songs have a tendency to swing from despair to hope pretty abruptly.
Overall, the album is a decent step away from the over-the-top Black Veil Brides, with a softer, more pop-y sound, but it retains some of the crucial elements of their sound. Andy Black’s dark, raw tone, which is strangely reminiscent of Disturbed singer, David Draiman, and the angst-ridden lyrics will provide a sense of familiarity for Black Veil Brides fans, and a pleasant listening experience for newcomers. The Shadow Side is an exciting start to Andy Black’s solo career.
Reviewed by Madeline Browney