Entering the indie music scene with a storm of hype can mean soul-crushing pressure for a band trying to find their audience. Luckily, the quartet known as The Pains of Being Pure at Heart quietly came into the room with a debut album that found critical praise and have been watching the fan-base grow steadily ever since.
In a community where oddities are embraced, it can be difficult to be noticed for getting back to basics. The Pains of Being Pure at Heart are an Indie Pop/Rock Band at their core, turning out songs that are perfect for house party fun. Their debut album is full of fuzzy guitars and reverb-laden vocals complete with hummable melodies.
But rowdy pop rock can be deceiving! The band is tight and the melodies are crisp without trying too hard. These may be indie songs that you can sing along to, but don’t be fooled by the music’s friendliness; closer attention to the lyrics reveals the unexpected depth and sincerity of truly great indie rock.
A bit of spit polish has been applied to their second full-length album, but it only serves to make a good thing even better. The vocals are cleaner and louder allowing the strength of the lyrics to come through and the music is still bright and fun. If the world of indie is ever getting a bit too strange, The Pains of Being Pure at Heart are a great retreat to what makes a great indie rock band.
If you like: Nada Surf, Best Coast, Spoon
Check out: The Pains of Being Pure at Heart (start with Belong, continue with their self-titled debut and graduate to the Higher Than the Stars EP)
Feeling brave: Rilo Kiley, Peter Bjorn & John, My Bloody Valentine, The Field Mice
AI level: Beginner