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Ronnie Radke’s latest album is impressively poppy and surprisingly diverse

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Annie Zaleski

The Details

Falling in Reverse
The Drug In Me Is You
three and a half stars

“I’m baaack!” Ronnie Radke cackles at the start of “Tragic Magic,” Track 2 on The Drug in Me Is You. It’s an apt summary of the album, the ex-Escape the Fate frontman’s first recorded output since ETF’s 2006 release, Dying Is Your Latest Fashion. Confident lyrics rooted in Radke’s life experiences—everything from his past troubles with drugs to frustration with his former bandmates—fuel a strident vocal delivery, which encompasses everything from post-screamo growls (“Raised by Wolves”) to rockstar-strut (“The Westerner”). Musically, Falling in Reverse owes heavy debts to ’80s rock. Guitarist Jacky Vincent’s scorching solos are ferocious jags influenced by hair-metal and iconic thrashers; the keyboards, riffs and harmonies during “Good Girls Bad Guys” conjure old-school Bon Jovi; and “I’m Not a Vampire” is primo ghoul-rock. Drug is surprisingly diverse, however. For instance, the oompah tempo and Radke’s theatrical delivery on “Caught Like a Fly” are more akin to Panic! At the Disco. What’s most impressive is how poppy Drug is: Try as you might, you won’t be able to forget these songs once you hear them.

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