10 Songs, 35 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

That The Birthday Massacre’s most haunting album to date was released in October 2012 might seem like coincidental Halloween timing. But Hide and Seek also sounds darker because, between albums, singer Chibi was diagnosed with vocal polyps; this made her voice sound noticeably more sinister, as you can tell right from the opening “Leaving Tonight." But it’s not until the following “Down” that the Canadian goth-rock quintet ramps up its gloomy synth-rock with guitars that sound harder than any previous recordings. When Chibi starts screaming in the chorus, her voice transforms from its demure cool to a witchy rasp. Anyone who ever put on too much black eyeliner and went clubbing in the late '80s will feel right at home after hearing “Play with Fire,” an icy ballad with sweeping vintage synthesizer tones and Chibi inflecting in a lower register that resembles Siouxsie Sioux or Nico. “Need” also harks back to the tail end of the Reagan era, when DJs spun vinyl by bands blending new wave and goth.

EDITORS’ NOTES

That The Birthday Massacre’s most haunting album to date was released in October 2012 might seem like coincidental Halloween timing. But Hide and Seek also sounds darker because, between albums, singer Chibi was diagnosed with vocal polyps; this made her voice sound noticeably more sinister, as you can tell right from the opening “Leaving Tonight." But it’s not until the following “Down” that the Canadian goth-rock quintet ramps up its gloomy synth-rock with guitars that sound harder than any previous recordings. When Chibi starts screaming in the chorus, her voice transforms from its demure cool to a witchy rasp. Anyone who ever put on too much black eyeliner and went clubbing in the late '80s will feel right at home after hearing “Play with Fire,” an icy ballad with sweeping vintage synthesizer tones and Chibi inflecting in a lower register that resembles Siouxsie Sioux or Nico. “Need” also harks back to the tail end of the Reagan era, when DJs spun vinyl by bands blending new wave and goth.

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