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Deja Entendu

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The title (meaning ”already heard”) may imply a lack of growth, but the sophomore effort by these emo-core specialists displays conclusive evidence of progress, both stylistically and lyrically. Frontman Jesse Lacey seems less interested in pummeling the listener with hooks than in hooking you with carefully crafted dynamics and tempo shifts that add emotional heft to his sensitive-guy crooning. The lyrics are especially bleak, recalling Gentlemen-era Afghan Whigs in their unflinching honesty.