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Return to The Pretty Reckless

     New York City rockers The Pretty Reckless deliver in a big way with their third album “Who You Selling For” recently released via Razor & Tie.  The album is solid in every way with blistering rock anthems and sultry blues numbers featuring introspective lyrics that give an inside look into front-woman Taylor Momsen’s life in rock and roll.

     Momsen’s longstanding songwriting relationship with guitarist Ben Phillips has resulted in outstanding songs that show a maturity far beyond her years. These songs are driven by her powerful vocals that run the gamut from raspy rocker to smoky, sultry blues seductress.  Working with producer Kato Khandwala and his belief in performance based recording,  the band is able to achieve a pure and honest sound with no frills and an emphasis on raw emotions.  The album opens with the spoken words of Momsen telling us to “Get your shit together” before her voice turns smoky and a piano kicks in.  The song was inspired by a poem written by Chidiock Tichborne on the night before his execution and quickly turns into a straight up rocker focusing on the idea of having control over your own mind and emotions no matter the circumstances.  The first single “Take Me Down” has  a funky groove and stand out chorus drawing from the classic blues of Robert Johnson’s “Crossroads” theme and making a deal with the devil.  “Oh My God” is an ultra heavy track and “Wild City” pays homage to being a young rocker in New York City.  The title track is a laid-back softer number as is the acoustic “Bedroom Window” followed by the driving gloom of “Living In the Storm.”  My favorite song from the new record and (for me the most powerful) was the classic blues feel of “Already Dead.”  It is a true showcase for Momsen’s vocal range and Phillips guitar work taking us on an passionate roller coaster ride of highs and lows.

     “Who You Selling For” is a modern masterpiece of blues inspired rock and roll and a must add to your music collection.  Check it out and enjoy the ride.