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Gen Dietzel: “THE HUMANITY” – particularly focused and caustic

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Posted May 5, 2018 by Peter Burns in Headlines

Gen Dietzel is an alternative rock vocalist and songwriter from New Jersey. She possesses a degree in Drama, and is continuing her education in music and music production through Berklee College of Music’s online program. She has released her EP entitled “THE HUMANITY”, which contains the track “Don’t Call Me Pretty” – a song she wrote in support of, and in solidarity with, the #MeToo Movement. The recording is foremost a showcase for Gen Dietzel, the performer. Her voice and words form the core of the EP, with connective tissue provided by the crunch of the harsh guitar-driven beats and smashing percussion. Dietzel’s voice trembles and screams, it needles and assaults. The full range of those elements are on instant display from the opening track “Liberty”, almost all at once, during its brooding and explosive arrangement.

“THE HUMANITY” is designed to straighten your spine, and to even exasperate you a bit.  This thorny collection of angry melodies and driving alternative rock compositions are meant to draw your attention to its emotional substance and intellectual conscience, rather than seek chart popularity.

Dietzel’s voice is a dark and sinister instrument that can convey pain, anger, and irony in a single line. Her lyrical cynicism sounds less like the wails of a petulant young lady and more like the observations of a woman that has seen a bit too much of the wicked world.

Gen Dietzel is particularly focused and caustic on the #MeToo anthem, “Don’t Call Me Pretty”, which harbors itself atop a claustrophobic, and chokingly intense bass driven rhythm: “Don’t tell me to smile. Your stare is a little vile. I have too many thoughts for a pretty face. I refuse to stay in my place…”

This powerful track features probing Dietzel vocals with some of her most biting lyrics. On it, she is reduced to her most potent essence, as she stares the issue right in the eye, giving no quarter and belts it all out.

Some warm piano chords provide “Mad Girl’s Love Song” with the swoon it deserves, but is only a lead-in to another ferocious lyrical eruption. This time of broken love – “I can’t wait to forget your name. I hope you go as quick as you came”, leaves no doubt about its desired interpretation.

Dietzel’s voice twists and turns, until eventually its molten lament cools and the smoke dissipates. It’s dark, it’s beautiful, and it’s heartfelt. She has never sounded as good, as irascible yet as in control as she does here.

The songs on “THE HUMANITY” pour out of the speakers like a wave, unrepentantly raw and crushingly determined. It sounds like an honest body of work, the very definition of Gen Dietzel’s innermost thoughts spooling out into the air.

The EP is ruthless in its unflinching look at society, stripping and baring it of any sort of protectoral wall. It allows for a visceral performance by Dietzel, one that seems to reach a number of jagged emotional highs.

There’s a vigorous determination and a creative dexterity, in both the EP’s free-flowing style and in Gen Dietzel’s own artistic cunning. She is fully untethered, not having to answer to the whims of a record company or the desires of a producer – as she recorded this EP in her bedroom – and as a result “THE HUMANITY” never has to stop to ask itself, who it’s all for, and what it’s all about.

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