They Don't Need to Understand
“Andy Black”, the experimental Dark-Wave solo project of Black Veil Brides’ lead vocalist Andy Biersack, released his first single independent of his band on Hot Topic’s YouTube channel on May 19th, 2014, entitled “They Don’t Need to Understand”. The song is vocally and musically a much different style than that which Black Veil Brides has become known for; however, it still draws from a very deep emotional place that Biersack describes as the “Shadowside”, which he called the “core interest for lyrical content” while writing this song. Biersack described the “Shadowside” as “taking your own fears or something that has represented a fear to you…and turning that into something that is a positive for your life”. Known among the fan base of Black Veil Brides for his fan-boy obsession with Batman, Biersack compares the concept of the “Shadowside” to “what the character of Batman is psychologically”.
In a 2014 interview with Kerrang! Magazine, Biersack emphasized that point to any of the band’s fans that may have been concerned about rumors of him leaving the group to focus on this project. “I made it very clear…it was a passion project on the side, and everybody in the band gets it”. He made the decision to make it a separate project because he was concerned about negatively changing the style and sound of Black Veil Brides, but Biersack also wanted to use the project as an opportunity to try something artistically different while still sticking to his musical influences. In his lyrics, Biersack tries to continue to focus on conveying an uplifting message that encourage rising from adversity instead of getting caught down in the difficulties of life, using those challenges to make yourself a better person, and staying true to yourself despite the negative things that other people may say and try to make you think about yourself because of their own insecurities. The music video for “They Don’t Need to Understand” was directed by Patrick Fogerty, who has directed a majority of Black Veil Brides’ music videos since the band was founded in 2006. The video features Andy Biersack as his solo artist character “Andy Black” sleekly styled in all black singing into a stand-alone microphone against the backdrop of silent home videos of Biersack as a teenager in his bedroom playing the guitar and singing, where he first began to develop his signature style and love for music. The “Andy Black” name stands as a reference of his history with and continuing loyalty to Black Veil Brides, but allows Biersack to keep this project as a sort of alter ego to the character that he portrays on stage with the entire band. The style of the “Andy Black” project was influenced by several different factors, including the way that Biersack himself used to dress in high school, drawing from and expanding upon his style based on that of musical groups such as the American punk rock band Alkaline Trio where the roots of his inspiration started in the heavy metal-punk rock “darkwave” genres of music. The “Andy Black” project is a way that Biersack has been able to use to explore different avenues of vocal style without affecting his character in or relationship to the Black Veil Brides band that is constantly evolving in their own way. Biersack began recording “They Don’t Need to Understand” and about nine other independent songs while the band was also working on their third studio album “Wretched and Divine: The Story of the Wild Ones”.
Although he has made in clear in interviews with Kerrang! Magazine, Hot Topic, and other media outlets that he does not currently plan on pursuing a solo career outside of Black Veil Brides, Biersack, according to the “Andy Black” Facebook page, has decided to release an album of songs that he has recorded in a separate context from Black Veil Brides, which was not the original plan when the project began. This decision was announced earlier this month on October 20, 2015 when the vocalist’s cover page of the “Andy Black” Facebook page was changed to a faded black and white logo featuring the “Andy Black” name in Greek-style font lettering above the date “2016”. Fans are anxiously awaiting the release of more details about the "Andy Black" solo LP within the coming weeks.