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Show Your Bones

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Album Review

As explosive as they seem on the surface, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs are also an ambitious, thoughtful band and keep pushing the boundaries of their music. They moved from the rawness of their early EPs to the polished art-punk of their first full-length in just over two years, and this drive to keep topping themselves is what led to breakthroughs like Fever to Tell's gorgeous ballad and hit single "Maps." After taking three years to follow up Fever to Tell, and scrapping many of the songs that they came up with while on tour supporting that album, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs returned with Show Your Bones, the yin to their debut album's yang. While Fever to Tell and "Maps" dealt with falling in love (and being more than a little freaked out about it), Show Your Bones is a breakup album. If the Yeah Yeah Yeahs had made this album earlier in their career, Karen O's cutting lyrics and Nicolas Zinner's choppy guitars would've sliced the poor ex to pieces; after all, on "Bang," from their self-titled debut EP, they (hilariously) wrote off a lame one-night stand with "as a f*ck, son, you sucked." Show Your Bones, however, tries to go much deeper than that. Even Show Your Bones' rockers are subdued. The cryptic lead single "Gold Lion" (which sounds like a mash-up of Love and Rockets' "No New Tale to Tell" and Siouxsie and the Banshees' "Peek a Boo") is a little plodding; though it eventually worms its way into listeners' heads, it's surprisingly restrained compared to previous singles. Aptly enough for the kind of album it is, Show Your Bones' softer songs are some of its strongest: "Dudley" sounds a little bit like Sonic Youth covering the nursery rhyme "Hush, Little Baby," while "Cheated Hearts" is a big, rousing ballad in the vein of "Maps." And, as on Fever to Tell, the band loosens up as Show Your Bones unfolds. "Mysteries" is a jealous cowpunk number that sounds tossed off, but has more bite and fun in it than the rest of the album. On "Turn Into," they take this twangy sound and turn it sweet, resulting in one of their best songs yet.

Customer Reviews

"Show Your Bones" shows potential

I am a fan of the Yeah Yeah Yeah (YYY’s). The single “Gold Lion” holds a special place on my iPod. Karen O. is a rare example of female vocals in the punk genre (Quick! Name one??? Slap that person who said Gwen Stefani.). Karen O. sounds strikingly like Joan Jett. Listen to “Phenomena” to judge for yourself. The YYY’s could be a great punk band, but alas they are thrown into the eccentric abyss that is “alternative”. Some tracks sound experimental (ala “alternative”). “Fancy” is not particularly one of my favorites. However, "Sweets" and "Warrior" are two deep tracks that I particularly enjoyed, ending in a bang with "Turn Into". “Show Your Bones” as a whole, shines with potential. The last four tracks of this album had me thirsty for more from the YYY’s. I look forward to hearing more from this band.

Wannabe Siouxsie? No way!

Give me a break. I have been a massive fan of Siouxsie since 1982 and there is absolutely no resemblance between Karen O and Sioux beyond the obvious similarities of black hair and red lips. Siouxise's husky, smoke-filled vocals are raw, electric and cutting. Karen O's are high-pitched feline caterwauling. That said, this album is okay on it's own merit but if the band want to be banshees there is no comparison and punk it's not.


I love every song on this album, ESPECIALLY GOLD LION, it makes me dance around in my room with my hair brush microphone, and do a little dance for the neighbours. Turn Into is an awesome song as well. BUY IT BUY IT BUY IT!!!! You won't regret it!!


Formed: 2000 in New York, NY

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Discovered in the wake of the Strokes' popularity and the subsequent garage rock revival, New York's art punk trio the Yeah Yeah Yeahs are comprised of singer Karen O, guitarist Nicolas Zinner, and drummer Brian Chase. O met Chase at Ohio's Oberlin College and met Zinner through friends after she transferred to NYU. Zinner and O formed the band in 2000; originally, they were a folky duo called Unitard, but they went electric...
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