Who? The Chicago-bred band, originally formed by singer Mat Devine in 1994, owes its sinister name to Devine’s melodramatic relationship and subsequent breakup with a girl he met in college. For seven years, the band — which went through various lineup changes and now includes Devine (vocals/guitar), Jonathan Radtke (guitar), Dan Wiese (guitar), and Greg Corner (bass) — self-released a series of LPs, singles, and EPs, and are now releasing Until There’s Nothing Left of Us via Atlantic.
What’s the Deal? Kill Hannah’s latest release treads a thin line between ragged indie rock and angsty shoegaze. Lead single “Lips Like Morphine” throws ‘bows with crunchy guitars and an aggressive beat, and Devine’s oft-high-pitched vocals massages lines like “I wanna feel a kiss just crush me / And break me down.” Electro-loving fans will find something here on tracks like the synth-heavy “Crazy Angel,” a highly-stylized effort which opens with a sound bite from teen flick The Girl Next Door in which actress Elisha Cuthbert asks, “What’s the craziest thing you’ve done lately?” Kill Hannah even tests the ballad waters on a spacey cover of the Church’s classic, “Under the Milky Way.”
Fun Facts: Kill Hannah is full of quirky bits of trivia. For starters, Devine was once an altar boy in Connecticut. More recently, the band flexed their skills in the video game Halo, wiping the floor with Maroon 5 after a show in Memphis. While that certainly proves they’re a great team, the band got even closer when each member got to make out with guitarist Radtke’s real-life girlfriend in their clip for “Lips Like Morphine.” ALYSSA RASHBAUM
Talk: Does Kill Hannah truly slay with their latest album? COMMENT
On the Web: killhannah.com