Melophobia

Kentucky's Cage the Elephant warp Sixties garage rock, Seventies punk and Eighties alt-rock into excellently weird new shapes – like the way a Beatles reference bumps up against chaotic horns and deranged Pixies crooning on "Hypocrite." As with the band's two previous LPs, Melophobia rides crackling melodies and a visceral tumult that's the perfect backing for Matt Shultz's paranoid lyrics: "I think your mother wants me dead," he sings against static-cling riffs on "Spiderhead." There's a freaky encounter with a spaceman ("Telescope") and a dance-party rager about a wicked girl ("Black Widow"), but the whole thing vibrates with hopped-up discovery.

From The Archives Issue 1194: October 24, 2013