The Shins - Chutes Too Narrow
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Restrictions and reversals abound in the Shins' music, from the names of their albums to their short-yet-circular songs and the often contradictory feelings they pack into them. They excel at sounding happy, sad, frustrated, and vulnerable at the same time, and their best songs, whether they're fast or slow, feel like they're bursting with nervous energy. Chutes Too Narrow's tracks are more subtle and roundabout than the more accessible debut. Largely acoustic with an intricate, shifting structure, the song builds up to unpredictable spikes of guitar and an amazing high note, forged out of pain and frustration. It might seem as light and fleeting as dandelion fluff or snow flurries blowing in the wind, but its direction promises even more good things.