Six years ago, Hella's Hold Your Horse Is translated mad guitar and drum wankery into tightly wound, well-crafted instrumentals. It was sick, but that shtick got old fast.
One solution is This Is It and I Am It and You Are It and So Is That and He Is It and She Is It and It Is It and That Is That, the latest from New York shredder Marnie Stern.
Stern's sophomore release sounds like that early Hella stuff, had they shoehorned the virtuosic racket into punk songs anchored by the guitar heroine's untamed lyrical chirps. She's a shredder, but Stern's songwriting is up to snuff, too.
As if to ensure the comparison, she brought in Hella's Zach Hill to do drums. Her manic finger taps sound right at home atop his freewheeling math-rock rhythms.
The world needs more guitar heroines as spunky and radical as Stern. Let's hope she slays The Summit's stage with as much authority as she brings to the studio.