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TREATS

4.2 out of 5 stars 75 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

The New York City dou known as Sleigh Bells emerged in the Fall of 2009 with rhythmic pop songs that combine overdriven guitar riffs and sugary female vocal melodies. Derek Miller, who played in teh popular Florida hardcore outfit Poison the Well, teamed up with singer Alexis Krauss after he happened to serve her and her mother at a Brazillian restaurant in Brooklyn. As proof of their winning formula, Sleigh Bells quickly earned the adoration of critics at the New Yorker, Pitchfork, Rolling Stone, and the Village Voice. They are celebrated by both their hometown's outer-borough lo-fi rock scene and international pop acts like Major Lazer andn MIA, who collaborated with Derek on her forthcoming third LP.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 1, 2010)
  • Original Release Date: June 1, 2010
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: MOM & POP MUSIC
  • Run Time: 32 minutes
  • ASIN: B003KT3NS4
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (75 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #79,996 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Red on Black TOP 500 REVIEWER on June 1, 2010
Format: Audio CD
This one is going to split the jury. Sleigh Bells are not a Christmas novelty act (some will disagree) but another band from the People's Independent Noise Republic of Brooklyn and an immense grungy dance punk juggernaut consisting of Alexis Krauss and Derek Miller a former hardcore rock guitarist. For influences think Bow Wow Wow, crossed with Lil Wayne and then throw in the Beastie Boys, White Stripes and Le Tigre.

As for the music Sleigh Bells elephantine beats don't just hammer the damn things could pile drive concrete supports into the foundations for skyscrapers. Their primitive guitar fuzz is wickedly distorted and married to the simplest of pop melodies. Krauss's ever so sweet voice provides tranquillity amongst this cacophony. Thereby this irresistible mix combines with room-shaking production and big guitars and is the reason why so many people are salivating over this album on the blogosphere.

When I first played the opener "Tell em" on my car stereo it was so bloody loud I swerved to miss a passing cyclist. It is a full blown aural assault, the musical equivalent of a punch in the face and one of the quieter songs on the album. It may just be 2010's musical counterpart to last years "My Girls" by Animal Collective. In terms of what follows there is no let up or escape. "Riot Rhythm" has drums which pound and Millers guitar introduces a razor like cutting riff. "Infinity guitars" sounds like a cross between the Beastie boys and Japandroids. "Run the heart" is Abba for the Twitter generation. It is a staccato composition punctuated by bubbling noises, shimmering synths and the dreamlike vocal of Krauss.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
As many have stated, Sleigh Bells have gotten a lot of buzz over the past year for their unique sound. There isn't an easy way to classify Treats; Some have drawn parallels to late 90's rap infused with The White Stripes and Le Tigre or MIA's Arular. There's even some classic rock influences to be found. All are valid, but there's enough going on here that the album as a whole has no comparison.

Derek Miller's hardcore roots are evident here, as is Alexis Krauss' previous work in a girl group. The two seem destined to clash, but defy the cynics and become one of the most interesting new acts this year.

From the beginning track, "Tell 'Em," I was hooked on the booming bass, storming guitar and Alexis' beautiful voice. The following track, "Kids," is one of the primary tracks that draws comparisons to late 90's rap. "Riot Rhythm" follows the first track's sound closely, and uses some addictive guitar riffs at that. "Infinity Guitars" is among one of the harsher tracks on the album, and also seems slightly out of place, but the change of pace is definitely appreciated. "Run the Heart" reminds me again of "Kids" in it's use of rap synth and beats.

"Straight A's" is the loudest track on the album. Without doubt. It brings a whole new meaning to loud, and makes the music seem larger than life. It's followed up with "A/B Machines," a simple 2 line song that will probably become some sort of dancehall remix favorite. It will also immediately remind some of MIA with the vocal style.

The namesake of the album, "Treats," is an interesting culmination for the album, and seems like an appropriate closer. It starts off by sounding like a Smiths song, then returns to form.
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Format: Audio CD
Sleigh Bells - Treats (2010)

I can understand why some people reject this music out of hand. It's a little gimmicky, maybe a bit contrived . . . but ya know what? I couldn't care less about that. This album is super pumped up and fun to listen to. It's got a heavy electronic sound with booming rock beats and electronic drums contrasted with airy, high-pitched vocals. The drums are intentionally distorted, sounding like they were overloading speakers with the volume turned up to 11 (they aren't too loud on the album though). Alexis Krauss has that sexy little girl thing going on in spades. She sounds quite juvenile - and that's intentional. These musicians are indeed young and this record comes from an unapologetically youthful place. Her vocals sound a bit like she's cheerleading at times. You can dance to this music, and while it might seem overly repetitive to some, a good listen reveals plenty of melody. The first four or five songs may give the impression that they've hit on one particular formula and they're sticking to it, but keep listening and you'll hear TREATS trying different approaches. Sleigh Bells maintain a basic template of sound throughout the album but there's actually a fair amount of diversity here. People who like the "Rill Rill" single getting airplay these days should be aware that the rest of the album is quite different from that particular track. TREATS incorporates divergent elements and manages to come up with its own unique sound.

Breakdown! (notes and impressions of each song) -

"Tell 'Em" - anthemic guitar, booming bass drums, finger snaps, ethereal rap/singing and distorted shards of guitar...."Did you do your best today?" ****1/2

"Kids" - infectious, loopy rhythm - "Oh, oh, oh...
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