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Sean Brackbill

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The Kills

Blood Pressures 4/5

The Kills' previous three discs were all amped, electric blues punk, but for the duo's fourth, guitarist Jamie Hince broke out a secret weapon: his very first acoustic guitar, a 1935 Gibson L-00 he bought last year. "With an acoustic, you tend to write songs, not riffs," he says. "This is blatantly obvious to anyone who's ever done it, but for me it was a fucking breakthrough." The resulting disc sets singer Alison Mosshart's wailing vocals against sleazy dub on "Satellite," sad Mellotron chords on "Wild Charms" and sampled ping-pong-ball percussion on "Heart Is a Beating Drum." They recorded over 12 months in rural Michigan, with sessions interrupted by a broken arm ("I got in a scrap," Hince says) and Mosshart's stint in the Dead Weather. Says Hince, "The longer you're in a band, the longer it takes to make an album."

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-Listen: The Kills' "Satellite"

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