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— KIM PETRAS 🕷 (@kimpetras) October 1, 2019
Last year, rather than join the thousands of artists vying to write the next new Christmas song, Kim Petras released a much-needed Halloween-themed album titled “Turn Off the Light, Vol. 1” to join the ranks of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” and “This Is Halloween” from “The Nightmare Before Christmas.” To the delight of her fans, Petras decided to release an extended, 17-song album titled “Turn Off the Light” this October, which includes the eight songs from the first volume.
Unfortunately, because there isn’t much competition in the Halloween album market, Petras’ songs didn’t exactly need to wow listeners to gain notice. In fact, many of the songs are incredibly repetitive and appear to just repeat their title line for most of the lyrics. This is clearly seen in “There Will Be Blood,” where the words “there will be blood” are sung 30 times. The nonrepetitive lyrics of her songs weren’t exactly high-brow either. “Death by Sex” plays on the idea that Petras is so good at sex, her sex will actually kill her partner from pleasure and then they will continue to have sex in the afterlife. It features lines like, “You’ll be missin’ me in the afterlife / Tonight’s gonna be the night of your life, ooh” and “Yeah, sex, sex, sex (Sex).”
While many of the songs on this album seem like basic frat party songs, with an obvious Halloween twist, some of them are distinctly different from the rest. “Bloody Valentine,” “Purgatory,” “Knives,” “Boo! Bitch!,” “Demons,” “o m e n,” “TRANSylvania” and “i don’t wanna die…” are all worldless beats, reminiscent of techno-pop. With a heavy base, they could easily be played at a club. “Knives” is especially interesting due to its use of the sound of knives scraping across each other as a backbeat. Additionally, “Death By Sex” and “Massacre” both have beats that sound vaguely like Christmas songs, “Silent Night” and “Carol of the Bells,” respectively. This could be a nod toward how many artists choose to write songs and release albums related to Christmas, rather than the many other holidays in need of music.
The songs where Petras actually sings significant lyrics, not just an occasional word or phrase to go with the beat, differ largely from each other. “In The Next Life” is sung in a robotic voice half the time and sung in a slower, sadder pop beat the other half of the time. “Turn Off the Light” is reminiscent to early 2000s pop songs in its steady beat and droney tone. “Death By Sex” sticks closer to the kind of pop songs found on the radio over the past few years; fairly standard and heavy on the echoing autotune.
One of the better songs on the album was “Everybody Dies,” which was far more romantic, almost like a slow-song at a dance, than the others and shamelessly stole the backbeat from Rihanna’s “Love On The Brain.” Petras’ singing range is used in its fullest, with her climbing the scales for the high notes and trilling for the lower notes. It is by far the catchiest song with its repetitive chorus of “Not everybody ___ / But everybody ___,” and, as a whole, it just had a ton more playback value than the other songs. It’s the kind of song that makes you sad when it ends, unlike its album-mates, which tend to leave you with a sense of relief that they’re finally over.
Rebecca Maher is a senior staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.