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515Pj-WbcjL. SL500 AA300 There’s a interesting connection between KITTIE and their labelmates in CHIMAIRA – both bands initially got early career boosts through appearances on a short-lived USA network series called Farmclub. Additionally, both bands have been through the ringer when it comes to labels and lineups, and both chose August of 2011 to release their sixth studio albums – both through eOne Entertainment.

I’VE FAILED YOU (out 8/30) reveals a version of KITTIE that finally feels comfortable in their own skin.

kittie2011With producer Siegfried Meir back on the boards, the album maintains the production level and overall sound of 2009’s IN THE BLACK, while moving into darker, more groove-based territory. It is also the second album to feature the current lineup of Morgan Lander, Mercedes Lander, Ivy Vucjic, and Tara McLeod.

I’VE FAILED YOU is a tighter affair, delivered with more precision. While Empires (Part 2) has already been released as the first video, it’s not representative of the album. The title track is an angry beast, followed by the chunky thunder of the previously-release single We Are the Lamb.

There has been a tendency for KITTIE to veer off into a thrash direction that never really suited the band, as the songs would often feel rushed, cramped, and similar to other songs in the KITTIE catalog. This happens once on I’VE FAILED YOU, with Ugly playing like a direct continuation of the last album’s Cut Throat (which also appeared on the SAW VI soundtrack). Oddly enough, both songs are exactly 2:57 in runtime.

Come Undone should be the next single. A highlight of the album, the track captures the perfect mix of all that KITTIE has to offer. The balance between the clean and dirty vocals along with the tempo changes present a bipolar contrast that plays out well over the course of just 2:16.

Bottom Line: If you haven’t picked up a KITTIE record in awhile, I’VE FAILED YOU is the album that invites you to give the band another listen. It’s sludgy and melodic, and undoubtedly one of the best albums in the KITTIE arsenal.

Rating: 3/5

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