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ATP! Album Review: Brody Dalle - Diploid Love

“Oh The Joy” isn’t just a song title from Brody Dalle’s new album Diploid Love. It will also indefinitely describe the euphoria felt by new and old supporters of Dalle upon the record’s release. Diploid Love, being the first album Dalle has aided in producing, is an absolute breath of fresh punk air that smells like maturity and motherhood instead of sweat and old tour vans. With the last release from the ex-Distillers frontwoman being a self-titled under the name Spinnerette in 2009, Diploid Love makes the five-year wait for new music well worth it.

Dalle powerfully asserts herself with signature growls on the line “I’m gonna burn this city down” in “Rat Race,” the album’s opener. Longtime fans need not to be worried – the singer hasn’t lost any of her grungy yet elegant charm. The beginning of “Underworld” could easily lead it to be mistaken as a Distillers B-side, but its brass horn-driven chorus perfectly showcases how far musically Dalle has advanced over the years.

One might think it would be difficult to avoid critiquing Diploid Love against Dalle’s previous releases. Where’s all the screaming? The cursing? What happened to the mohawks and middle fingers? Although significantly more polished than the aforementioned projects, Diploid Love succeeds in subtly incorporating those popular elements. Dalle stomps her way through the tough upbeat “Don’t Mess With Me,” warning doubters and skeptics against doing just that. The 9-track offering’s first single “Meet The Foetus” spotlights trance-like verses that transition into a brilliant sing-a-long featuring Garbage’s Shirley Manson on the neighboring song. Lyrically, the album brings forth influence from Dalle’s pregnancy and her insight on global current events.

The release’s two calmer tracks add considerable depth to Diploid Love. “Carry On” highlights an emotional chorus that elevates the song as one of the top on the album. Less successful is “I Don’t Need Your Love,” a haunting lullaby that allows Dalle to show off her vocal range. The downfalls of the song are its length (6:02) and the overly ambitious instrumental risks, making it sound relatively cluttered. With that being said, hearing Dalle hit higher notes is pretty damn amazing.

Those anticipating an album sounding like the 2014 version of the Distillers’ Sing Sing Death House or Coral Fang won’t necessarily be disappointed, but should become accustomed to the singer’s flexibility as an artist. Dalle brings raw power along with pure emotion to this release, solidifying her place in the ever-changing, fast-paced world of music. Diploid Love offers Dalle the perfect canvas to say, “I may have gotten a bit older, but I could still most definitely kick your ass.”


Laurel Weber

Diploid Love will be released on April 29th via Caroline Records and is available for pre-order here.

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