Fall EP releases aim for strident statements 

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New singles and extended-play releases this fall share the common trait of bold rhythms and little subtlety. The best-known of the bunch, Death Cab for Cutie’s The Blue EP (Atlantic) relies on Ben Gibbard’s wistful, quiet voice, but the percussion rolling across five songs places this in the ranks of loudest Death Cab, which sometimes but not always means better.

Brooklyn’s art band Bodega, after launching a flawless debut album and live LP, bedazzle yet again in the eight-song, 30-minute Shiny New Model (What’s Your Rupture?) that almost feels as if lead singer Ben Hozie will go introspective folk-rock on the audience, before rhythms careen from every angle, and Bodega once again opts for primal screams.

Fans of late-20th-century power-punk will rejoice in two EP-length reunions of merit. The legendary 1990s Chicago band The Lilacs are back with a powerful four-song EP, The Lilacs Endure (Pravda), featuring crisp guitars and the dueling voices and songwriting of Ken Kurson and David Levinsky.

Those raised in the early-’80s New York art punk scene will be happy to learn of the return of Alexa Hunter and her band Disturbed Furniture. A listen to the five tracks of the band’s Continuous Pleasures (Arevarc Records) feels like welcoming back an old friend.


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