The Birthday Massacre – Diamonds

Rating: 3.5/5
Distributor/Label:
https://www.metropolis-records.com
Released: 2020
Buy Album: Bandcamp Spotify  Youtube Music – Google Play Music – Deezer
Band Website: Official – Facebook – Instagram

THE BIRTHDAY MASSACRE

 

Band line-up:

Chibi – Vocals
Rainbow – Rhythm Guitar
Falcore – Lead Guitar
Owen – Keyboards
Phillip Elliot – Drums
Brett Carruthers – Bass

Tracklisting:
  1. Enter (3:35)
  2. The Sky Will Turn (4:14)
  3. Diamonds (3:50)
  4. Run (3:24)
  5. Flashback (3:26)
  6. The Last Goodbye (4:16)
  7. Crush (5:18)
  8. Mirrors (4:14)
  9. Parallel World (5:17).

Album Length: 37:34

 

 

Review:

Alternative/Goth Rock band The Birthday Massacre released their eighth studio album, ‘Diamonds’, in March of this year. The distinctive group came back strong with their recognisable cute-but-deadly sound and aesthetic, reminding us again of vocalist Chibi’s sweet and dreamy voice, paired with their signature soaring synths and guitars. Continuing to define their own unique sound, they curate this album as an exploration of opposites… “darkness as well as light, poison as well as its antidote.” ‘Diamonds’ reminds us that every moment, conflict, and inner reflection on one’s life is special, and invites us to grieve and be pensive, but to look towards the sun of the new day and dance in its warmth. 

It took me several rounds of listening through the album and researching the band to understand their personality and where they are coming from. Initially, I was put off by the style and genre of their music. However, while it may not be the kind of Goth Rock I’d go for personally, I’ve grown to appreciate their work. The eerie start to the record with the intro of ‘Enter’ is intriguing, but then takes shape of an almost EDM-like track. Without knowing much about the band to start with, I’m somewhat confused, but also drawn in by Chibi’s clear and pretty voice, the bubbly-ness of which is emphasised by the music. Production-wise it’s quite nice, and for someone who may be a fan of the style, fantasy-esque lyrics and soundscapes will certainly take them into The Birthday Massacre’s video-game adventure through the universe. 

80s Goth blended with New-Age Soft/Pale-Goth lends way to a current, catchy, and very successful sound. I’m particularly more impressed throughout the album as I hear songs like ‘Run’, which definitely incorporates the darker tones I crave. Even more so, ‘Flashback’  moves me with a throbbing bass line in a minor key, balanced beautifully with ethereal lyrics:

“As above, so below, as the universe, so the soul.”

The band slow down their energy for ‘Crush’, which I immediately take to, as I picture the wind blowing on a soft and dreamy night. I become filled with 2020 Soft-Goth romance, perfectly depicted in the words:

 “It’s a deep black crush, it’s a pale blue love.”

Certainly by now my appreciation for ‘Diamonds’ has developed into something more well-rounded. Still, the sound is too Pop/Dance for me, particularly in ‘Last Goodbye’ during the pre-chorus, which is formulated similar to an EDM build. At this point, I am craving to hear more of the chunky guitars that were present during the ‘Pins and Needles’ album era. My wish comes true on ‘Mirrors’, which bears a heavier, almost industrial sound. This is my favourite on the record, the vibe matching their “cute but evil” aesthetic best. 

‘Diamonds’ draws to its finale with ‘Parallel World’, an existential but uplifting song. ‘Parallel World’ is a dramatic summation of how it feels to see ourselves get lost over time, guarded by fences we build with our own minds. Nevertheless, we can and will see hope if we choose to fight through and lift the barrier that divides us. In their words:

“And behind the veil, there’s a way out, if you follow it through”

The Birthday Massacre are unmistakable, full of energy, and clearly know what to do for their success. The album artwork couldn’t match them any better. Between their look, Chibi’s lush, dreamy vocals, and the catchy nature of the music, ‘Diamonds’ is any Pop-Goth prince or princess’ ideal daily soundtrack. 

Listen to the title track, ‘Diamonds’, HERE:

Review by Kat Knite
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