On their self-titled Jagjaguwar Records debut, Pat and Matt Flegel, Chris Reimer and Mike Wallace — the four men who make up Women — give rock traditionalism a modernistic update. "Black Rice," for instance, sports a '60s structure, replete with ethereal singing, chiming guitars and a rousing chorus. Yet the ostentatious production and curiously unresolved conclusion take the piece into arty territory also explored on "Lawncare," a slab of bang and clatter in which frenzied percussion takes precedence over echo-laden vocals and a serpentine guitar that slithers through the wreckage. As for "Group Transport Hall," it's brief and beautiful — but what starts out as a simple acoustic strum winds up feeling nearly as unsettling as "January 8th," which trades melodicism for vigorous atonality. It's a weird blend that defies easy description, but that's as it should be. After all, Women, appearing alongside The King Khan & BBQ Show and the Omens, are complex creatures.
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