Sleigh Bells - 'Texis'

7/10

Ever since they first emerged with their 2010 debut album 'Treats', Sleigh Bells have always stood out as a distinctly different name on the alt-rock scene. Mixing frontwoman Alexis Krauss' sweeping pop vocals with the driven and grizzled guitar-based production of Derek Miller has always created this vibrant juxtaposition within their direction, delivering a sound that is both exciting and unmistakable at every turn. And now after a number of years away from the spotlight, they return with their cacophonous fifth full-length 'Texis', a record that sees them return with pure vigour and grit.

For a while, it almost felt like we were never going to get another Sleigh Bells album. After the release of their 2017 EP 'Kid Kruschev', they announced that they would only be sharing singles and EPs from now on. But clearly the format of a full LP was too enticing to reject as 'Texis' makes for a wonderfully powerful listen. While some of their more recent efforts were seen as a bit lighter and more radio-friendly than their earlier work, this new collection sees them find that suitable middle ground for their vicious output, regularly switching between soaring pop numbers and more intense, visceral cuts.

With more than a decade focusing on a single aesthetic, Sleigh Bells have shown that they are far from out of ideas. While 'Texis' isn't anything distinctly new within their catalogue, it still manages to push the boundaries of what they have done in the past, and makes for a brilliantly enjoyable return to form.

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