The Depreciation Guild Spirit Youth

The Depreciation Guild Spirit Youth
Whereas the Depreciation Guild's debut was a brilliant mix of My Bloody Valentine guitar noise, whispered vocals and Famicom bleeps and beats, In Her Gentle Jaws was just the sum of its influences. Spirit Youth, the New York, NY three-piece's much anticipated follow-up, takes these elements and fuses them into one chiming, Cocteau Twins-influenced sound, the guitars and chip tune noises blending into one seamless instrument. Anyone who has witnessed the band play with group members Kurt Feldman and Christoph Hochheim's other band (the Pains of Being Pure at Heart) will see parallels in the two group's evolving sounds. But adding to the shimmering new production is songwriting heads and shoulders above that of the band's debut. "Dream About Me," released last year as a limited edition seven-inch, is a standout, combining a mighty guitar riff with Feldman's ethereal vocals, while "Crucify You" sounds like a top 40 radio hit in an alternative universe where these kind of tunes get radio spins. Like In Her Gentle Jaws, Spirit Youth falls off a bit after its midway point. But even the album's lesser tracks are a step forward in song structure, transitioning between verse, chorus and bridge with ease. (Kanine)