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Power Trip brings back the thrash

By Brian Krasman
Friday, June 21, 2013, 8:57 p.m.
 

‘Manifest Decimation'

Power Trip (Southern Lord)

★★★★

Modern thrash has been dull and uninspired, the bands completely uneducated on what made the genre special and explosive in the '80s. Yet Power Trip gets it.

On its eight-track debut record, the Texas-based crossover thrash band gets nasty and brutal, and it will make those who grew up with the genre throw fists in the air on crushers “Heretic's Fork,” “Conditioned to Death” and “Crossbreaker.” This is the real thing, and Power Trip is the best modern thrasher going.

‘Olympia'

Austra (Domino)

★★★★

Canadian electronic pop band Austra might remind some of a mix between Bjork and their country mates Young Galaxy, and the band's excellent second album is charged with heartbreak, passion, and Katie Stelmanis' quivery voice.

The 12-track sophomore record is a stunner, but one that might take time to settle in. But once it does, you're bound to count high points “What We Done,” tarnished “Home,” and devastating closer “Hurt Me Now” as mood changers.

‘Innocence Is Kinky'

Jenny Hval (Rune Grammofon)

★★★½

Nordic experimentalist Jenny Hval could curdle your blood with her music and her words. Striking some of the same notes as Kate Bush and Bat for Lashes, her music is esoteric and off putting but also infectious.

She does not hold her tongue lyrically, as you'll find on the striking title cut, which drips in sexual imagery, and she goes back and forth from pop gaze to poetic recitations on “Mephisto in the Water,” damaged “I Called,” and “I Got No Strings.” Love her creativity and guts.

Brian Krasman is a contributing writer for Trib Total Media.

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