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The Zincs Black Pompadour

Since 2005's Dimmer, The Zincs have proven to be quite the shape-shifters. Moving from a spacious acoustic sound into darker, more unsettling power-pop, The Zincs sound like the bastard children of Joy Division and a loungier Pulp. All comparisons aside, Black Pompadour finds strength in intricate guitar work that shifts from classic-rock riffs to swelling surf leads. But given the album's instrumental dynamics, James Elkington's semi-monotone vocals don't always match up with the songs. Regardless, The Zincs possess the fire of '80s-era Rough Trade stars, worthy of much more than a passing glance.

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