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I dug this Seattle quintet’s 2015 Chaos EP (their third, following 2009’s Furniture Girls and 2014’s Dreams, to go with an LP, 2010’s How I Learned to Crawl), calling it “charismatic and convincing rock” – for confirmation, check out its stimulating single “Lily,” which showcased Prince & The Revolution’s synth specialist “Dr.” Matt Fink. On the eight-song In Shadows, they’ve offset the loss of second guitarist Bubba Jones by adding beguiling backup singer and trumpeter Kate Bradley (a multi-instrumentalist who also moonlights in a Croatian dance ensemble!). In mostly foregoes the hard-driving rock crunch of Chaos, in favor of subtler, more intricate arrangements that better accentuate the velvety and vivacious voice of frontwoman stayC Meyer, a 14-year veteran of eight other bands prior to the Furnitures’ 2007 formation.
Meyer sounds heavenly throughout, whether she’s rebuking a lying loser on the disco-funky “Doobius,” ruminating about the purpose of her existence on the delectable “My Time,” revering treasured trinkets on the dreamy “Heirlooms,” or relating L.A.’s shady sins on the dashing “Ghosts of Hollywood.” But old fans shouldn’t fret: guitarist Jason Lightfoot, bassist/keyboardist Jim Watkins, and drummer Thane Mitchell still have plenty of muscle-flexing moments, as on the forceful “Flight” and the compelling, Chaos-conjuring closer “Daywalker.” And on the bubbly-to-brash, jazz trumpet-tinted “The Want,” Meyer proves she can still produce her patented throat-scratching, Pat Benatar-beckoning belt when the situation demands. (furnituregirls.com)
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