The Joy Formidable, 'The Big Roar' (Atlantic)

The Big Roar
Critical Mass
Release Date: March 15, 2011
Label: Atlantic

by Spencer Kornhaber

As if the size-related descriptions of 2006's mighty-sounding mini-album A Balloon Called Moaning weren't enough, this trio blows out 2009 single "Whirring" to nearly seven minutes with a Slayer-worthy kick-drum barrage girding the band's trademark glazed guitars and TV-buzz low end. Conversely, singer-guitarist Ritzy Bryan ups the airy lilt in the songs' hooks, while her lyrics document the discrepancies between emotional interiors and exteriors. "Turn the dial on my words," she suggests, and the band's glorious noise obliges time and again.

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