Within the past few months it seems that this group of four girls from Madrid have been all over the news in the indie scene. Hinds(formerly Deers) have released a fair number of singles over the past year, building up the buzz around their lo-fi garage tunes and with good reason; each of these singles has been catchy and fun to sing along to, all while those slightly gritty guitars jangle on infectiously. Leave Me Alone is an impressive debut, filled with lo-fi tunes with a pop twist to them, though not much more than what the singles have been hinting at.
What’s great about this record is that it is unapologetically messy and raucous and never really too much so. Hinds reach a balance of precision carelessness, which you get on the louder, in-your-face tracks like “Castigadas en el granero, or Warts,” or any of the singles that youve probably already heard. The vocals on these track trade off between quick lipped solos and -sometimes together-sometimes not- distorted girl gang shouting. On paper, this doesn’t sound like something that would make a lot of sense, but it works alongside the tight knit guitar riffs. “Chili Town” is a prime example of how well this dynamic can shine and the band uses the variation in vocal style to give the track a tonal variety and climactic chorus associated with your favorite pop tunes.
The album ends with a succession of slower, less rowdy tracks, but the vocal performance doesnt shift: theyre sloppy-chic till the end. Of these ending tracks, “Walking Home” is the standout. With its the surfy guitar riffs and start and stop instrumentation it grabs your attention and holds you through the last notes of the record. The guitars on this song are catchy and light, while the vocals bring the lo-fi aspect to the mix.
And so at the end of Leave Me Alone Hinds have given you exactly what you came for, so you can’t complain too much; there are no bad tracks on the record. My only real qualm with this album is that these ladies dont stray too far from one style of track and one singular sound. Dont get me wrong, it’s a good one, but the lack of variety prevents excellency and lands on mediocre. Nonetheless, Hinds are destined to remain a buzz band through 2016, and I’m interested to see where they will go next for a sophomore record.