MUSIC REVIEWS

Cold War Kids: Dear Miss Lonelyhearts Stream

Cold War Kids - Dear Miss Lonelyhearts Cover ArtDear Miss Lonelyhearts, the first Cold War Kids album since 2011, was released via Downtown Records on April 2, 2013. The boys jumped back in wholeheartedly and with plenty of energy on the first track, “Miracle Mile,” one of the most upbeat and catchy songs on the album. Following this is a collection of rock, ballad and dance tunes that effectively balance instrumentation with content. What kind of content, you ask? Well, Dear Miss Lonelyhearts is a concept album inspired by Nathanael West’s novel “Miss Lonelyhearts,” a tragic comedy set in Depression-era America. As is true to form with Cold War Kids, the drums are high in the mix and Nathan Willett’s distinctive vocals command attention, but the music never detracts from the intriguing reassembly of West’s ideas, which are given new life by Willett.
At times, soulful vocals wail through confessional ballads with lyrics that read like diary threads. At other times, keyboards pulse loudly to dancey rhythms or occasionally offer a more delicate touch, like on “Water & Power,” with Willett’s falsetto soaring above. There are also plenty of cathartic buildups and gospel-like harmonizations, which is very effective on tracks such as “Tuxedos” and “Bitter Poem.”
Cold War Kids can be a polarizing band for some and they’ve definitely received their fair share of both positive and negative criticism for past releases. After listening to their latest LP, the fourth studio album from the band, this reviewer thinks it’s a pretty solid effort and that Dear Miss Lonelyhearts will be well liked by the band’s longtime fans.
For a limited time, stream the full album below.
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