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Indie rock band Cold War Kids first made a name for themselves in 2006 with the release of the debut album, ‘Robbers & Cowards’, receiving praise for their soul and blues inspired rock. Their style has changed a lot since then, especially in their upcoming album, ‘Dear Miss Lonelyhearts’. It’s less soul and more atmospheric arena rock than any of their previous work, but still identifiable as a Cold War Kids album.

The album’s first track, ‘Miracle Mile’ (also the lead single) sets the pace for the first few songs with its catchy rhythm and fast, punchy piano. It’s a stellar opening and, in my opinion, the best song on the album.

The most interesting song is “Loner Phase”, led by pulsing electronics and joined by heavy drums and a jumping bassline. It’s rich and embellished, but not overly so.

‘Fear & Trembling’ provides a well-needed break from the album’s high energy with cascading drums, orchestral, layered vocals, and a well-used jazz influence. ‘Bitter Poem’ is another standout; it’s raw, clean, and anthemic and will dazzle live.

However, the album was not without low points. ”Tuxedos’ left me confused; it seems pieced together, with an outdated melody reminiscent of a high school slow dance and strangely enhanced vocals. Frankly, it sounds like a bad karaoke rendition.

”Dear Miss Lonelyhearts’ is not the best music Cold War Kids have produced, but it’s not bad, either. It certainly has standouts that makes it worthy of attention.

7/10

“Dear Miss Lonelyhearts’ hits stores on April 2nd, but is available for streaming here. Pre-order the album from iTunes here.

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