It was love at first scream for me and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Fever to Tell punched a hole in my chest and stole my heart, but its follow-up, Show Your Bones, gave me the cold shoulder. I had high hopes that It’s Blitz! would rekindle the romance, especially after hearing the soaring, surprisingly synthy lead single “Zero.” Oh, Karen ... you had me at “get your leather on.”
She loses me pretty fast, though — the dance-floor-driven Blitz sounds like its angling for an iPod commercial instead of some bold new direction. (Think Ting Tings.) There are some brilliant tracks — “Soft Shock” and “Hysteric” rival the loveliness of “Maps,” for instance — but they’re stuck beside overcooked ballads (“Skeletons,” “Runaway”) and half-baked disco tunes (“Dragon Queen”) that are nowhere near as joyously ass-shakeable as Fever’s “Y Control.” Despite the uneven material, Karen O somehow manages to stay captivating — we may have had our ups and downs, but she’s still one of the most exciting rock vocalists working today. Whether screaming or singing (or some combo of the the two), whenever she opens her mouth, it’s bliss.