Polar Bear Club
Polar Bear Club’s debut album made best-of lists everywhere, but it takes until nearly the end of this follow-up for them to prove why. Not that Chasing Hamburg isn’t brilliant—it’s just that “One Hit Back,” a post-hardcore punch to haters everywhere, is so fist-pumping good that its shadow looms over the rest of the songs. “Living Saints” comes close as singer Jimmy Stadt swears, “All my friends are living saints” over guitars that leap from mellow to pit-stirring. Mostly, Polar Bear Club mix the passion and fury of Hot Water Music and Latterman with hooks and a spit-polish (with an occasional nod to Lifetime—see “Drifting Things”). And we swear to spend more time with the rest of the album once we take “One Hit Back” off Repeat.