On their 2012 debut, Hospitality made charming, quickwitted indie pop full of cagey guitar frizz. The Brooklyn trio's second album is a little more worry-worn and a little tougher-sounding – and it's all the better for it. "Rockets and Jets" seems to evoke 9/11 with images of smoky blue skies down by the river, over an arrangement that veers and burns like a subterranean Yo La Tengo; on the synth-driven "Inauguration," singer-guitarist Amber Papini tells off a worthless boy while Barack Obama gets sworn in on TV. It's a great song for loveless lovers and unrequited liberals – a double-edged dip into the "loss lack abyss" from which this fine little band draws its soft power.
From The Archives Issue 1202: February 13, 2014
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