by Heathers

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The second studio album from Dublin's Ellie and Louise Macnamara, better known by their celluloid-inspired alias Heathers (a reference to the Winona Ryder and Christian Slater-starring 1988 cult classic of the same name), retains the raised, punk-folk backbone that served as the foundation for their 2007 debut, and adds a punchy, radio-ready sheen that propels each cut into the pop stratosphere with explosive results. There are few things as innately satisfying as listening to the effortless harmonizing of twins, and the Macnamaras deliver the goods with panache, punctuating each and every syllable, building wailing walls of wordless sound, and locking up like a pair of laser-guided missiles, all the while remaining almost defiantly interchangeable. Kingdom will no doubt invoke comparisons to like-minded craft pop offerings from Haim, Lorde, and most notably, Tegan and Sara, whose (successful) 2013 bid for the mainstream Heartthrob it most closely approximates, but there's a caginess to cuts like the propulsive opener "Circular Road," the thick, cello-driven "Underground Beneath," and the soaring, hymn-like closer "Flight," the latter a slow-build, labyrinthine arm-hair raiser that sounds like a 21st century update of Kristin Hersh's "Your Ghost." They apply that same sense of purpose to the album's more club-ready confections, infusing "Lions, Tigers, Bears" and "Gather Up," and the sublime, Bastille-inspired "Waiter," with a refreshing amount of emotional heft, but despite all of the sonic flirtations, they somehow manage to avoid Florence + the Machine-style melodrama, probably because even at their most despondent, they sound like girls who still just want to have fun. Heathers aren't making big pop moments by committee, their singing is from the heart, and Kingdom works not just because it's jam-packed with earworms, but because it was conjured from a well of pure, raw talent.

Product Details

Release Date: 04/08/2014
Label: Big3 Records
UPC: 0804983910024
catalogNumber: 910024

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Heathers   Primary Artist
Max Dingel   Synthesizer,Hand Clapping,Synthesizer Bass,Electronic Drums
Jonny Byers   Cello
Ellie Macnamara   Synthesizer,Vocals,Background Vocals,Hand Clapping
Louise Macnamara   Synthesizer,Acoustic Guitar,Percussion,Hammond Organ,Vocals,Background Vocals,Hand Clapping
Tom Drew   Synthesizer,Bass,Mandolin,Electric Guitar,Hammond Organ,Hand Clapping,Synthesizer Bass,Guitar (Nylon String)
Rob Lee   Synthesizer,Bass,Percussion,Piano,Drums,Hand Clapping,Synthesizer Bass

Technical Credits

Sean Mosher-Smith   Artwork
Max Dingel   Producer,Engineer
Ellie Macnamara   Composer
Louise Macnamara   Composer
Tom Drew   Composer
Rob Lee   Composer
Conor Clinch   Cover Photo
Ciaran Conroy   Executive Producer
Brian Scally   Executive Producer

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