Early in its career, Blonde Redhead clearly drew inspiration from DNA, whose song was the inspiration for the band's name. But instead of solely offering up atonal squalls and musical deconstruction, Blonde Redhead's songwriting also flirted with haunted melodies. By the time of 2004's Misery Is a Butterfly, what would become the group's mature sound fully emerged, with Kazu Makino's unmistakable high-register voice floating over increasingly elaborately textured atmospheres and rhythms. The Alan Moulder-produced Penny Sparkle, released in September, received mixed reviews, but anyone following the band's trajectory should have known the trio wouldn't try to repeat itself. The new album is deeply layered with synths and gossamer guitar work wedded to electronic and organic percussion. As a live unit, Blonde Redhead projects a chilling intensity that is surprisingly emotionally charged and moving.
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