The Needle Drop

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart- Belong

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It seemed impossible, but the Pains of Being Pure at Heart have somehow found a way to sound sweeter and more innocent than they did on their self-titled debut. This slight change in direction didn't sit well with me on first listen, though. I was a little disappointed to see the noisier, more experimental elements of their music sort of melt away here; however, the band is definitely moving in a definitive direction. This is the sound of the Pains coming into their own. Just like Beach House did with their latest album, the band is building on their initial sound with some panoramic production and more accessible sounds.

The songwriting is still strong and catchy. The vocals are still thin and breathy. The guitars still strum on a beat that's worth swaying to. Sonic innocence.