Review: Diorama – Even The Devil Doesn´t Care

Diorama are like that solid old car you have come to depend on over the years. It gets you were you need to go, you may not give it a lot of thought until you need it and it doesn’t hold a lot of surprises for you, it’s just reliable, unchanging and dependable. That’s the slightly more wordy version of: this latest from the German quartet is as-ever-solid, if unremarkable and they’ve delivered another strong effort that bears striking resemblance to what’s come before.

It takes an awful lot of listens to an album like this before a listener is able to draw out those singular moments that define it. Thing is, Diorama are very good at the melodramatic synth opera with its instantly identifiable Teutonic edge, and they have had real success with it, which means there has been little incentive to switch it up. And so it goes. The songs here are interchangeable with songs from any of their previous efforts, but that’s not a knock. Because what’s come before had often been downright terrific. Now there are some nice flourishes like the Phantom of the Opera keyboard ascendency in “My Favourite Song” or the funky waltz of “When We Meet Again In Hell” or the almost percussion-less “My Justice For All”, but these moments are like minor distractions from the workmanlike, solid (there’s that word again!) electronic dirgepop they have perfected. The stuttery synth bass line from “Over” sets a perfect mood; the sinister opening to “Hellogoodbye” leads into a spooky-mansion-dance track; the double time beat of “The Scale” is gorgeously propulsive (with the great lyric, “Take me to the Apple Store/The Count von Count will keep the score” – contemporary consumer reference + Sesame Street = pure win). Song for song, they’ve produced another genuine winner.

It does indeed take a long time and a lot of listens to make this album truly connect but once it hooks its claws into you, it has you. And though the year is thus far short, we have a new leader in the chase for electronic album of the year…

Watch – The Scale

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