Many may be mistaken by the very name of this band, expecting an easy listening collection with a twee and traditional feel. It doesn’t take long to realise this is a misconception.
On this album’s opener ‘Tell ‘Em’, Sleigh Bells enter with drums that sound like gunshots and soaring, wild guitar lines. So basically, this duo aren’t twee at all, they’re very loud. Forty seconds in however, comes another surprise, when lead vocalist Alexis Krauss enters with high pitched vocals which prove as an antidote to the music. The combination is quite astounding, certainly unlike any other I’ve heard recently, and it’s powerful stuff.
The album continues without hesitation, and the first four tracks carry the type of swagger that only bling clad teens can uphold. At only 32 minutes in total, the album is certainly pacey, though there is breathing space in the middle of the album where ‘Rachel’ and ‘Rill Rill’ convey a less aggressive sound; the latter being the album’s highlight.
The final four tracks once again return to the riotous style you’ll be expecting by now, including ‘A/B Machines’ which is a repetitive and relentless attack of chanting, though strangely harmonious as Krauss’s sweet vocals contrast again with the powerful sounds being made. Final track ‘Treats’ could be mistaken for a collage of noises from an industrial warehouse, capping off an impressive, if explosive, debut album of unique sounds.