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Bruce Peninsula  

Open Flames (Hand Drawn Dracula)

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If churches played music like Toronto’s Bruce Peninsula---fulsome gospel-tipped thunder with four-part female harmonies cleaved by impeccable bluesman growling---I would go every week. Its sophomore effort is a distinct evolution from 2009’s A Mountain is a Mouth, which sticks to and nails an earthy aesthetic; here, the female voices are featured more prominently and the band occasionally sounds uncomfortable in its own skin, like on “In Your Light,” which hits you over the head with its Dirty Projectors influence. But misplaced Brooklyn experimentalism be damned: When the other songs make you stomp hardwood until the planks start to curl, Open Flames sounds definitively like one of this year’s finest Canadian releases.

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