Sunday, March 2, 2008

CD Review/Artist Review: The Pierces - thirteen tales of love and revenge

I’ll admit it, I judged The Pierces by their looks when I first saw them. I thought that they would be a CW brand of underground/indie rock: over-produced, polished, thick like molasses, and plastic. In short, I thought that The Pierces, comprised of sisters Catherine and Allison, would sound like Paris Hilton’s “Stars Are Blind.” I couldn’t have been more wrong.

When I fired up my YouTube to give The Pierces a listen, the first song I fell on was “Boring,” a smart and sarcastic look at the life of a socialite. As they name the finer things in life and complain about how “life is such a chore” with Chris Isaak undertones, Madonna (circa early ‘90s) shadows and a Sean Connery-era James Bond vibe, The Pierces succeed at drawing the listener in with sexual languidness and an almost disturbing sister-on-sister contact.

The folk-rock duo released their third album, thirteen tales of love and revenge, on March 20, 2007, which at once infuses the macabre, eerie sound of The Doors with what you’d expect to hear in the carnival tent of a traveling gypsy circus. Other key tracks include the melancholy “Three Wishes,” the playful and sinister “Secret,” and the man-destroying “Lights On.”

What makes The Pierces so appealing? Resounding harmonies, lyrics with substance, a unique sound that doesn’t descend into self-absorption, and photogenic sisters (can’t lie, that’s a part of it).

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