Album Reviews

Chastity Belt – Chastity Belt – Album Review

Chastity Belt – Chastity Belt – Album Review
by Killian Laher

Chastity Belt are an all-female group from Seattle and this is their fourth album.  From the word go, it’s a great-sounding album, ten songs of clean, interlinking electric guitar and soothing vocals.  Opener Ann’s Jam sets the tone, all faraway chords and staring longingly into the distance, as the coffee goes cold and the morning slips away.  Which is what happens when you listen to it.  The guitars are relentlessly downstrummed, yet almost indescribably lovely on tracks like Elena, Rav-4 and Split.  The drums on Effort are muted, a little like early Cure, before they introduce strings into the outtro.

It Takes Time is probably the strongest track here.  It opens like a great, timeless swinging strumalong, the kind of muted yet effortless track Gillian Welch at her best pulls off, then builds gradually to a noisy conclusion as the guitars get fuzzier and growl harder.  Perhaps its loveliest moment is final track Pissed Pants, the beautifully plucked guitars almost blushing at the title, becoming gradually noisier towards the end of the track.  Some might call this folky slowcore?  One minor complaint is the album is a bit samey, there’s really no variation.  However, it’s never dull, they just do one thing and do it well.

Track List –

1. Ann’s Jam
2. Elena
3. Effort
4. Rav-4
5. It Takes Time
6. Apart
7. Half-hearted
8. Split
9. Drown
10. Pissed Pants

Ann’s Jam

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