My Brightest Diamond A Thousand Shark's Teeth

Though it demonstrates the ambitious vision of Shara Worden as an artist and singer, A Thousand Shark’s Teeth is ultimately an oddly tepid album. Beyond a lack of cohesion, which partially stems from multiple recording sessions, the album generally floats by unobtrusively, seemingly content to make only the slightest spectacle of itself. The ringing, bigger-than-life bombast that made Bring Me the Workhorse such a forceful debut is tempered and, while Worden’s remarkably operatic vocal gifts are still on display, they too seem sedate. Exceptions to this rule aren’t particularly compelling either. The Blonde Redhead-esque "Inside a Boy” eventually explodes with a powerful outcry from Worden but the payoff is only half-realized. Despite the dynamic pacing of its arrangement, "The Ice & The Storm” comes early, while the mash of glitches and strings on "Apples” recalls Tortoise working together lazily. With aspects of trip-hop, indie pop and grand orchestral elements, A Thousand Shark’s Teeth has it all yet somehow doesn’t sustain engagement. (Asthmatic Kitty)