Heartless Bastards couldn't have a more deceptive name: If there's anything this gritty Ohio rock outfit has in spades, it is heart. Though often deemed “garage rock,” Heartless Bastards' music goes far beyond retromaniacal obsession or hipster posturing, and simply does what rock should do. Principal member Erika Wennerstrom's tough, gnarled voice leads songs about struggle and heartbreak, which she accompanies with grinding power chords and simple arrangements. Heartless Bastards' new album, Arrow, sounds as fiery — and adventurous — as anything this band has done. There are more pretty acoustic songs in the repertoire than there used to be, but Heartless Bastards still gloriously contradict their moniker.
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