Monday, June 19, 2017

The Birthday Massacre at the Marlin Room at Webster Hall

Rhythm guitarist Rainbow and vocalist Chibi met at a college fine-arts program and began composing music together in 1999 in London, Canada. Rainbow recruited childhood friend Michael Falcore to join on lead guitar since they had already been recording music together in high school. None of the three had been in bands before, but together they became Imagica, a name inspired by the 1991 fantasy novel Imajica. In 2002, the band became the Birthday Massacre in order to avoid confusion with a California death metal band with the same name. The Birthday Massacre in 2001 relocated to Toronto, Canada. The Birthday Massacre's seventh and most recent studio albums, Under Your Spell, was released on June 9, 2017. The band's current lineup consists of Chibi, Rainbow, Falcore, keyboardist Owen, bassist Nate Manor, and drummer Rhim.

At the Marlin Room at Webster Hall tonight, the Birthday Massacre looked like a gothic rock band, but the high-energy performance actually encompassed many shades of hard rock and even pop. Chibi occasionally sounded like she was singing a top 40 melody, but then would switch to a near death metal growl. Similarly, some of the accompaniment was rooted in synth melodies, but more often the band crunched nu-metal riffs. Dark wave chilled and industrial metal spiked several songs. A churning reworking of Tommy James & the Shondells' pop song "I Think We're Alone Now" was nearly unrecognizable for all its turbo speed and heaviness. The contrasts of light and dark, smooth and rough, airy and heavy were prevalent, and while this mix might not be to everyone's tastes, the experimental blend was a credit to the band's integrity.

Visit the Birthday Massacre at

  1. Nowhere
  2. One
  3. Red Stars
  4. Looking Glass
  5. All Of Nothing
  6. Counterpane
  7. Destroyer
  8. Divide
  9. Superstition
  10. Lovers End
  11. Happy Birthday
  12. Video Kid
  13. Under Your Spell
  14. No Tomorrow
  15. Leaving Tonight
  16. Alibis
  17. Pins And Needles
  18. In the Dark
  1. Blue
  2. I Think We're Alone Now (Tommy James & the Shondells cover)
  3. Broken