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Sleigh Bells’ sophomore album was better on most every level than their smash debut, except it wasn't an unexpected sneak attack this time. We saw them coming, feigned disinterest, even with hair blown back from a lumbering riff-monster like this one.
Closing the chapter on wide scope American themes and Civil War metaphors, Local Business sees Titus ringleader Patrick Stickles focusing inward on personal struggles. Here he depicts the exhilarating and distressing moments of leaving New Jersey (or wherever it is we all came from) for Brooklyn. By the song's end, the guitars are doubling as bagpipes as it slowly morphs back into a flag-waving rallying call.
Here, Van Etten's whispered introspection gives way to chugging guitar and gusty, intense cries. In the course of three minutes, she adopts a take-no-prisoners persona and becomes a force to be reckoned with.
Brooklyn workhorses Woods released another slab of acid-drenched folk-rock in 2012, as they do every year. And like every year, they've upped their game of expertly occupying the space between throwback and forward thinkers. "Cali in a Cup" is one of the breeziest, earthiest songs we've seen from them yet. As long as the Brooklyn music scene has Woods, it's going to be just fine.