Beloved [Deluxe Edition]

by: I Killed the Prom Queen

In 2007, with two members out of the band, I Killed the Prom Queen did something that few metalcore bands seem willing to do: they broke up, opting to call it quits in lieu of having the kind of revolving-door membership that plagues so many touring bands. Now, seven years later, the band makes its return with Beloved, an album that finds the Australian metalcore outfit refreshed and revitalized. While trends might have changed since their departure, with electronic and EDM influences seeming to creep into the sound of more and more metalcore bands, I Killed the Prom Queen opt to stick with the melodic metalcore sound of their earlier work, and the choice is one that works for the band. With the world having changed all around them, I Killed the Prom Queen's by-the-book approach to the genre feels like a refreshing return to form, showing that you can still make something visceral and heavy without stuffing every moment with synthesizers and dance beats. And while the heavy side of their sound is definitely strong, it's the melodic side that proves to be the most striking, especially on a song like "Kjærlighet," which makes smart use of a string section to create a wide-open, soaring feeling amidst an assault of crunching guitars and screamed vocals. While no one is going to accuse I Killed the Prom Queen of thinking too far outside the box, Beloved is an incredibly solid album from the Australian band, and is a fine return to the scene after a seven-year exile. ~ Gregory Heaney

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