This album really needs a PSA in light of the quarantine and the fact that so many people are going stir-crazy. If you are in a dark place right now, maybe not listen to this one until the pandemic mess calms down a bit. This is fucking dark. Look, on the best and sunniest of days, My Dying Bride makes my want to slit my wrists. It’s just what they do. You should know this going in.
This album takes its inspiration from vocalist Aaron Stainthorpe’s young daughter being diagnosed with cancer a few years back. As such, it’s a emotional wreck of a ride. You’ve got themes of loss, questioning, pain, suffering and all of the other emotions that would go into worrying about a terminally sick child. Luckily, his daughter ended up beating back the cancer and is currently in remission. So, you can at least take this ride knowing that the ending is not completely bleak.
Even though this is a thoroughly challenging listen, it really does mark one of My Dying Bride’s better albums. Real personal albums usually tend have a greater impact on the listener even though the personal cost of making such an album is tough on the performers. I’m not sure how often I will revisit this album in full just because it is an emotional gut punch, but it is a very good album that is worthy of your attention.
4 flip flops out of 5