Sleigh Bells: Reign Of Terror

by Christian Redl

Rating: 3.5/5
Song to Look Out For: Comeback Kid

Few would ever imagine thrash guitar entering the Indie pop scene, but that is because they have never heard of the music duo called Sleigh Bells. This male/female partnership falls under the category of “noise pop,” and with good reason. Noise pop is the combination of both pop lyrics and melody, but accompanied by atonal distortion and feedback, usually given by an electric guitar. This description portrays Sleigh Bells almost perfectly.

The album opens up with a “live” concert sound and the wailing of guitars, setting a tone for the entire album. This appears on the track “True Shred Guitar,” and the title of this song matches the sound of the riffs laid down.

Sleigh Bells’ lead vocalist has a whimsical quality to her voice, consistent with the Indie scene, which constantly struggles against the gritty guitar and heavy drum kit found in the tracks on Reign Of Terror. This battle between vocals and instrumentation bring forth a complexity and depth to the band, which only consists of two members.

“Comeback Kid” is easily the anthem of the album, preaching the lessons of getting back up after being knocked down and proving yourself, all in brilliant up-beat form. This drum-heavy track is much more on the pop side of the album, which will easily reach plenty of listeners, making it relatable and fun. This is a future summer jam for sure.

Not every song however hits you hard in the face. The final track on the album, “D.O.A.” brings a resolve to Reign Of Terror. A slow, almost ambient and haunting guitar mellows the mood as the vocals on this track appear much more mournful.

Reign Of Terror is an album that encompasses ups and downs, while capturing pop and metal. It is difficult to believe just two band members achieved such complexity, but what they have created is an album that transcends genres and audiences. It’s an album worth anyone’s time.