As the pieces of My Chemical Romance spill into our headphones, it’s time to decide if the hiatus that launched thousands of tear-stained tweets was for the best. What appears to be happening post-Romance is almost like fragmented concentrations of the many genres they inhabited.
Gerard Way has reinvented himself every time he returns to the spotlight, not dissimilarly to Bowie or Kanye. Influences are apparent even from Hesitant Alien‘s first single, No Shows, with a video that literally looks like Morrissey’s You Have Killed Me if Morrissey was from another planet (the jury’s still out on that one). Aesthetics are always going to be important with Gerard, and even the suit & tie look seems to point to Jarvis Cocker/Pulp influences.
On Jaurez, Gerard gets a little heavier, with snarling guitars and some of the most aggressive vocals on the album. Drugstore Perfume is a perfect ballad with some of Gerard’s most interesting lyrics coming from vocals with a production style that makes everything sound distant and ethereal, a great match.
How’s It Going To Be begins with an Adam and the Ants-esque drumbeat, quickly transforming into an epic synth anthem that’s instrumental latter half is reminiscent of the last half of Kanye West’s Runaway. This amalgamation of influences is actually what makes the album so unique instead of so derivative.
If you’re looking for the straight-up angst his former band were associated with, frnkiero andthe cellabration might be more your thing; though, fans who prefer the band’s later work will particularly enjoy this solo effort. Gerard has a knack for being particularly whimsical without ever losing the aggression of rock n’ roll and he’s pulled it off here.