January 29, 2023
Ithaca, NY | 38°F


‘Reign of Terror’: Hard-hitting electric tracks ring out loud in fiery album

Noise pop serves as an understatement to describe Sleigh Bells’ newest release. The second album from the youthful band, “Reign of Terror,” combines electric guitar with techno beats. Sleigh Bells rocks on with a fair diversity of sounds cranked up to 11 in attitude.

Lead singer Alexis Krauss invokes the grungy spirit of Joan Jett in the album’s opening song, “True Shred Guitar.” Sleigh Bells shoves a strong foot forward with shredding electric guitars blasting loud and proud. “Demons” similarly explodes with its thunderous guitar chords and lyrics of destruction. “Comeback Kid” has the most pop feel of all the album’s tracks with its high electric notes and bubbling sound.

The power ballad “End of the Line” transitions the album from its frenzied blasting of guitars into a quieter and softer side to the band’s work. An anger-infused song about betrayal and abandonment, the track is filled with a basic sadness and nostalgia amid its echoing tones. The song serves to introduce the more mellow range of the otherwise hyped-up rock pop band.

“Never Say Die” and “Leader of the Pack” are softer songs that help balance out the angry storm of sound heard earlier in the album. “Road to Hell” also falls into this category, but  its darker with a repeating chorus line that may hypnotize listeners.

Overall, the songs favor power over precision. Their simple beats can often devolve into storms of electric guitars and sound effects, but could help to emphasize the band’s approach of wild abandon toward most, if not all, of its music.

“Reign of Terror” is a loud, boisterous album from this up-and-coming
no-holds-barred band. The album has a little something to offer for guitar enthusiasts and heavy electronic music lovers alike.