Music Reviews

Clap Your Hands Say Yeah New Fragility

(CYHSY) Rating - 7/10

Looking at the title of Clap Your Hands Say Yeah's latest LP, New Fragility, it might appear as if Alex Ounsworth is taking a hard look at the state of the world. And there is some truth to that: on tracks like Hesitation Nation and Thousand Oaks, the indie-rock project's mastermind is calling out the fakeries of American exceptionalism and school shootings in his usual quixotic way. We quickly learn that he conflates these examples of how the system has failed us as he candidly shares how he's failed himself. Steeped in melancholy, Ounsworth turns inward as he goes into the humiliation and despair that comes after going through a heavy divorce. His performances are impassioned, though sometimes slightly tedious, adding strings and keys over scruffy folk-rock. Ounsworth even alludes to his past brush of fame on CYHSY, 2005, though what we really get are broad, everyday depictions of the mundane. It's a beautiful song, though, reminding us of his notable talent even if he's been selling himself short for over fifteen years.