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Fol Chen, ‘Part II: The New December’ (Asthmatic Kitty)

As their “The Beautiful Ones” contribution to spin’s Purplish Rain compilation last year proved, this Los Angeles band loves Prince something fierce, right down to the straight-faced Wendy and Lisa female vocal stylings. But on Fol Chen’s third album, they forego freakiness for nerdy esoterica, exploring etymology amid the distorted drums of “The Holograms.” Despite help from members of Liars, The New December slips from the itchy bliss of “In Ruins” to the title track’s tedious glitching and the castrato coos of “C/U.”