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Hospitality: Trouble (Fire)

Hospitality

Hospitality

Trouble

(Fire)

Brooklyn trio Hospitality cite King Crimson, Arthur Russell and Wire as influences, which might come as a surprise to anyone who thought their self-titled debut from 2012 sounded like an anglophile American indie band besotted with The Pastels, Belle And Sebastian and Camera Obscura. I will accept the Wire reference on this second offering, however, as the girliness has gone from Amber Papini's voice while the instruments grow tougher and the arrangements tighter in a move that is still more US New Wave than UK post-punk. The big chords, gritty riff and cave-sized vocal reverb of Nightingale signal this shift in direction, which is carried through by the bass hook of Going Out and the sharp jabs of I Miss Your Bones to reform Hospitality in the shadow of Yeah Yeah Yeahs. But despite a more prominent electro element this time round, the pace slackens and the album ultimately suffers a twee relapse with the tuneful strum of Sunship and Call Me After. It's not quite an identity crisis, but they end as a different band from the one that opened proceedings.

Alan Morrison

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