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CD of The Week

Week of 11/21/16

    Sleigh Bells - Jessica Rabbit (Torn Clean)

    Jessica Rabbit is the fourth album released from Alexis Krauss and Derek Miller, otherwise known as Sleigh Bells. The duo boldly puts forth a lot of experimentation on this record that showcases mild and, dare we say, mainstream melodies. It's a change in comparison to their edgier noise pop sounds that put them on the map with their debut album, Treats.

    The album starts out with "It's Just Us Now," the first of many tracks to display the impressive vocal range of Krauss. "Loyal For," a short but compelling anthem, is another great track that displays her vocal power. The majority of what we hear on Jessica Rabbit is a more mellowed-out sound from the duo.

    "Lighting Turns Sawdust Gold," "Hyper Dark" and "Torn Clean" are prime examples of these timid tones. "Torn Clean" seems to be out of place as the second song of the album as the many pauses between beats drag on. The mystical beginning rhythm of "Lighting Turns Sawdust Gold" essentially revives the movement of the album. "I Can Only Stare" is said to be Miller's favorite song on the album and was inspired by The Smiths. It's definitely one of the stand-out songs on Jessica Rabbit and is a nice transition into "Throw Me Down The Stairs," a song that reverts the duo back to the darker sounds for which they are known. Krauss exhibits some similarities to Alison Mosshart of The Kills on this particular track. It's a song like "Unlimited Dark Paths" that makes this album confusing and complex. The song starts out in a completely different way than it ends, and continually shifts to different rhythms and melodies that don't quite fit together.

    Collectively, it's a fun and consistent pop record that emits a lighter Sleigh Bells sound. However, it does seem as though the duo tried almost too hard to create something for mass appeal instead of remaining true to their original sound. Vocally, Krauss has brought a whole new element to Sleigh Bells which hopefully continues to progress.

    **Donate $20 or more to Y-Not Radio to receive a copy of Jessica Rabbit. Click here for details.
    Review by Gina Rullo

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