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[mp3] Purity Ring // Fineshrine

It’s been nearly a year and a half since I first introduced Purity Ring and their burner “Ungirthed.” The intervening months have been quite eventful for the boy-girl duo, what with signing to 4AD and occupying headliner slots at large festivals amongst the highlights. Garnering comparisons to another male female duo in Sleigh Bells, whose buzz outweighed the actual quality of music being produced, some backlash has surfaced. Attaining a level of success so quickly with just a few songs to their name has bred some divergent opinions regarding the outfit and what they’ve “earned”. I don’t care what slot they play in at a festival, nor do I care much about buzz. What I do concern myself with is their musical output. Much like my feelings regarding their propensity towards slapping two words together for a song title, that subsequent output has been less than stellar.

[mp3] Purity Ring // Fineshrine

Until their latest track “Fineshrine” surfaced, my expectations for the future of the band had significantly lowered to the point of only vague interest. “Belispeak” and “Lofticries” operated in a darker capacity sound wise, matching the oft violent imagery evoked in the lyrics, but moving away from the upbeat “Ungirthed” to a creepier, haunted sound that didn’t capture my attention for more than a cursory listen. On “Fineshrine,” my expectations are once again raised with more chipper tones contrasting Megan James’ smooth delivery of grotesque imagery. To my ears, the pop charm present reminds me once again of what I found so enjoyable in “Ungirthed,” and has me wishing for more along these lines.

The duo’s debut album, Shrines, is due out next month on 4AD, a few days after they are to play the Bug Jar here in Rochester.