This 11-track CD represents The Birthday Massacre’s seventh full-length album, and explores the moody ambiguities of romantic relationships. Chibi’s delicate, almost fragile vocals are bracketed between thunderous guitar and drum crashes in The Birthday Massacre’s signature style. Minor key melodies captivate the listener and emphasize the introspective and poetic narratives which explore the entanglements of romantic interdependence. Even the bitter-sweetness of abandonment gets explored, and, in a sense, celebrated.

Symphonic arrangements afford ample opportunity for instrumentalists to showcase their power chord mastery, complex arrangements and symphonic rock credentials. Delicious melodious hooks accompany the narrative, whether it be an unflinching look at an abusive affair or reveling in an obsessive relationship. In all cases, the rhythm is emphatic and compelling, as the lyrics are seductive.

Dreamy, hallucinatory and ethereal vocals integrate with flourishes of angry, menacing guitar, percussion and synthesizer, creating a musical portrait of innocence defiled.

Rating: B+

In A Word: Signature

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