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SUBVERSION & POST-ALTERNATIVE

EXCLUSIVE

INTERVEWS WITH


IN T E RV IE W BY

NICK DEMARINO P HOTOS BY

JEREMY SAFFER ILLUSTRATIONS BY

KAYLI SOMMERS

Plenty of metalcore bands have crossover potential, but few have executed that maneuver as well as Crown the Empire. After two grandiose, story-driven albums, the Dallas Texas quintet found itself at a crossroads.They could continue to ride their meteoric rise to fame with a safe scene album, or they could move forwardand reach an even larger audience. That process isn’t always so clean, and the departure of he band’s lead guitarist was the collateral damage. After the dust cleared, though, Crown the Empire emerged a sleeker, more aerodynamic group, as evidenced by their new album, Retrograde. Fans of the band will cling to the infectious melodies and metallic guitars that have always anchored Crown the Empire’s music, while newcomers will appreciate the simplified structures, victory choruses, and glossy aesthetics that have been added to the mix. Retrograde has strong singles (“Zero,” “Hologram,” “Weight of the World”), but the album also moves through an impressive range of moods (“Lucky Us,” “Oxygen”). Not every metalcore act can have it both ways, but Crown the Empire pulls off a proper hat trick while advancing its sound in a meaningful way on the band’s third full-length. Vocalist/keyboardist Andrew “Andy Leo” Velasquez and longtime drummer Brent Taddie discuss Retrograde and Crown the Empire’s evolution.


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ISSUE


Outburn Magazine