- On this ambitious 2006 outing, My Chemical Romance boldly follows in the footsteps of Green Day, both in working with producer Rob Cavallo and in taking a conceptual route (a la AMERICAN IDIOT). The result is an impressive collection of songs that finds the goth-leaning New Jersey punk-pop group transforming itself into the title's "Black Parade," a darkly clad marching band that relates the woeful tale of "the Patient," as portrayed by frontman Gerard Way (who bleached his hair blond to convey the character's sickness). In addition to bringing--believe it or not--the equally dramatic and eye-liner-loving Liza Minelli on board for a guest appearance, My Chemical Romance proves its theatrical mettle by moving from the melancholy grandeur of "Welcome to the Black Parade," which bears an undeniable Queen influence, to "Cancer," an emotive piano-driven ballad. Lifted by its lush, inventive arrangements and Way's dynamic vocal performances, THE BLACK PARADE effectively stakes its claim as the SGT. PEPPER'S of the brooding Myspace set, and secures My Chemical Romance's shadowy space in rock history.
Rolling Stone (p.69) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "[T]he best mid-Seventies record of 2006, a rabid, ingenious para-phrasing of echoes and kitsch from rock's golden age of bombast."
Rolling Stone (p.104) - Ranked #20 in Rolling Stone's "The Top 50 Albums Of 2006" -- "My Chemical Romance rev up the pathos with an arena-ripe panache..."
Spin (p.95) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "It's a savage, heartfelt, at times hilarious goth-mosh emopera..."
Spin (p.62) - Ranked #5 in Spin's "The 40 Best Albums of 2006" -- "[A]n orchestrated spiral of punk-goth, classic rock, Salvation Army bands, and high school musicals."
Entertainment Weekly (p.70) - "[U]plifting, ambitious, and at times riotously enjoyable....Pristinely produced by regular Green Day collaborator Rob Cavallo, this album is not just the band's most adventurous, but also its best." -- Grade: A-
Entertainment Weekly (p.128) - Ranked #3 in Entertainment Weekly's "Top 10 Records Of 2006" -- "PARADE stands as one of the most cohesive, engaging rock records of 2006."
Q (p.147) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "[T]hey've concocted a startlingly ambitious concept album, complete with Queen-inspired solos, windswept piano ballads and Sgt Pepper-style vaudeville."
Q (p.123) - Ranked #32 in Q Magazine's "100 Greatest Albums of 2006" -- "A major new band had arrived."
Alternative Press (p.179) - "What's really engaging is that THE BLACK PARADE is a concept album about death, yet even the most weepy sentiments are delivered with a swagger, a blistering guitar lead or a joyful, bouncy cadence."
Alternative Press (p.136) - Included in Alternative Press's "10 Essential Albums Of 2006".
Kerrang (Magazine) (p.10/14/2006) - "[W]hen THE BLACK PARADE reveals its secrets to you, you'll be dazzled by its brilliance."
Kerrang (Magazine) (p.69) - Ranked #4 in Kerrang's "20 Greatest Albums of 2006" -- "[T]his was punk rock in glorious Technicolor."
Mojo (Publisher) (p.110) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "A record riddled with blood-soaked riffs, morbid lyricism and the biggest of conceptual game plans..."