It took a while for me to peel back the layers on No News From Home. On the surface the sophomore LP by Houndstooth is a rather pleasant offering of tough, rootsy indie rock, but with more time to sit with the record, more dark corners are revealed, more personal passions peaking through the cracks of its radio ready exterior. Songs deviate from the perceived template, devolving into noisy squalls as on opener "Bliss Boat," chugging hypnotically on the burning "Witching Hour," or dipping into laconic country as on "Spirit." Kate Bernstein's voice has a weariness about it that balances out the dreamy nature that seeps into their songs, lifting what could be ordinary into a territory that feels heavy yet comfortable, like a favorite sweater soaked in the rain. The more listens this record receives, the deeper and darker her wells of sadness seem and the sweeter the relief feels when Bernstein shrugs off the pain without succumbing. All the while underneath her yarns, the band is rifling through a polished potpurri of stylistic riffs with the kind of precision that makes it seem like second nature. Its a record mature beyond its years, and pulling it off so well that its easy not to notice its subtle charms until its got you hooked.
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