Oh boy, these are back… Considering they had meant to have broken up last year, you can only assume that there was clearly no distance between Blood On The Dance Floor and their music, and that the “split” was either some kind of publicity stunt or the duo caving in to almost universal hatred. Except this time, it’s a bit different, with Jayy Von Monroe leaving for good, and the band now comprised of Dahvie Vanity and his girlfriend Fallon Ven Detta. It’s not as if this is going to change much though; between the needlessly vulgar, scenekid-pandering dreck that their music typically consists of, and the repugnant little twerp that Vanity has proven himself to be time and time again (plus, an album called fucking Kawaii Monster), there are no illusions that this’ll be anything close to a rebirth, or even in the roundabout ballpark of quality.
And lo and behold, Kawaii Monster is just about as worthless as anyone would come to expect from Blood On The Dance Floor, representing a band who clearly aren’t even trying, but are also so hilariously out of touch with what their target demographic actually want. Not that there is a target demographic for this thing, mind, but if they at least wanted to fashion one, they could’ve done better than this, utter garbage from front to back that makes no secret of its pandering intentions, but even then comes across as a disgustingly hollow attempt at being “relatable” through the medium of God-awful electro-pop that hasn’t advanced past 2004 and is still trying to “XD” its way into relevance.
Yes, this might be reaching for the lowest of low-hanging fruit, but it’s not as if it isn’t deserved. The pair practically invite such derision; just take a track like Ghosting, the sort of shamelessly tasteless horror-show that would put anyone off sexting for life, and how it’s followed up by The Coffee Song, which is exactly what you’d think it is, and Anti-Social Media, a piece of limp-wristed social commentary about how people are too engrossed in their phones and the internet, and how they should learn to live in the moment. Putting aside the fact that Blood On The Dance Floor would be absolutely nowhere without some influence on the internet, there’s no clear idea or theme that they’re trying to get across here, just random ideas that’ll hopefully play well to a juvenile audience with the advanced cognitive functions to be a Blood On The Dance Floor fan (ha!), and who’ll hopefully get a kick out of their asinine chatter about absolutely nothing. Factor in the number of cringeworthy references and impressions peppered across this thing, like the irredeemable, hackneyed pirate pastiche of Yo Ho 2, and expecting to find any surprising lyrical depth is a pretty lost cause.
It’s not as if Kawaii Monster is brimming with quality otherwise, though; quite the opposite, in fact, considering how royally the duo manage to fail at pretty much everything they do. It’s not even as though either is particularly competent behind the microphone either; Ven Detta probably fares the best with a bratty trust fund baby personality that, even then, hits outright obnoxiousness pretty quickly, but as for Vanity, he’s basically a failure across the board. He can’t rap considering how much he tries to and how excruciating it can be, and when he tries to sing on some of the more “serious” cuts like Six Feet Under or the disfigured attempt at a country song that is You Are Enough, it’s hard to think of another vocalist with as much production at their disposal but who turns out as tone-deaf as him.
And really, when that production is the backbone of the entire album, and even that can’t be gotten right, that’s the grounds for a particularly rough listen. Honestly, “rough” is something of an understatement here, not only given how blaringly loud and tart the chibi-trance beats that drive most of this thing are, but also how cheap it all sounds. There are points on tracks like Love Like Voodoo where the fidelity of the instrumentation is surprisingly low, fizzing away in the background while the vocals sound a good three feet away. It’s not great when that seems to be the default setting, and how most of this album feels as though it was hastily thrown together rather than built from any artistic integrity.
Is anyone really surprised by that, though? Is anyone really surprised that Blood On The Dance Floor, an act that know they have such a vice-like grip on an audience of deluded children that they can put out literally anything, barely show a hint of growth or evolution here? They’ve always been terrible, and even now with a reshuffled lineup, they’re still terrible, only this time it feels as though they’re trying to maximise the obnoxiousness. It makes it so there’s barely a redeeming factor on Kawaii Monster; it’s not even bad in a way that can be funny or ironically enjoyable, rather an utterly soul-crushing experience that somehow picks enough from its empty head to last for almost an hour. Hopefully people can finally realise how much of a disaster this group is, and send them into obscurity where they so rightfully belong.
For fans of: Craving the sweet release of death
Words by Luke Nuttall
‘Kawaii Monster’ by Blood On The Dance Floor is out now on Dark Fantasy Records.