Brooklyn’s odd trio drop the tempo while upping the intensity on their fourth album, which is peppered with playful diversions both musically and lyrically.
Yeah Yeah Yeahs
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The title song is a buzzing triumph, incessant and insistent like its subject.Producer Nick Launy deploys an empty beer bottle in the name of a pesky insect sound-effect, but Karen O’s voice is the true star, getting under the skin with her repeated yelps of “suck your blood”.
Area 52 finds her wanting “to be an alien”, over a tune which may share musical heritage with The Stooges’ I Wanna Be Your Dog.
There are those who think the band’s rough, punky edge has been worn down by the commercial pressure that comes with success, but this more considered approach is equally satisfying. Subway samples underground transport, and integrates it into the tune in the style of a synthesized percussive instrument, while Sacrilege sonically embraces a gospel choir stripped of spirituality.
Despair is darkly contemplative but ultimately uplifting, and Buried Alive broods with heavy atmospherics bubbling below the hip-hop intent of Dr Octagon, making other hip- hop rock collaborations sound superficial by comparison.
Always is that alien concept: a modern betrothal tune, dovetailing with the self-explanatory Wedding Song. Love is clearly in the air in the soon-to-be married singer’s existence.
Download this: Subway, Mosquito