[POLISHED DISTORTION] Anyone who's ever walked through the streets with music blaring through headphones has experienced how whatever you're listening to affects the way you move. If you're listening to doom metal, you might move fast and keep your head down. If you're listening to technopop, you might feel more buoyant. And if you're listening to Summer Cannibals' Show Us Your Mind, you'll definitely walk with more aggressive swagger, possibly while swinging your hips. It's a strut that correlates to frontwoman Jessica Boudreaux's ability to sing in a way that's smooth and lacerating in equal measure.
Though the band's sophomore album is generally more ferocious than 2013's No Makeup, the songs haven't shed their catchy pop qualities. It's a no-bullshit effort, recorded without lo-fi gimmicks. Even with its defiant sound, though, Show Us Your Mind is crouched in uncertainty. On the chorus of "That Feeling," Boudreaux illustrates the paradox of the hopeless lover: "When she's walking away/I wonder if I'm going to see her again/When she's walking my way /I wonder how I'm gonna get out of this." At points, the conundrum of romance makes her sound positively downtrodden, such as on closer "TV," when she sings, "everyone on TV's making love like it comes so easily." But even if Boudreaux doesn't explicitly resolve her questions for us, the music offers an answer of its own: Play louder.
SEE IT: Summer Cannibals play Bunk Bar, 1028 SE Water Ave., with Wampire, on Thursday, March 5. 10 pm. $10. 21+.