After expanding its head count, L.A.'s hippified West Indian Girl cooked up loose, electronically augmented rock for 4th & Wall, its sophomore album, following a departure from Astralwerks Records. Founders Robert James and Francis Ten fleshed out the group with more keyboards and vocals; huge crescendos on tracks like "Indian Ocean" and "Sofia" owe to said adjustments. With the extra members in tow, the record's breezy ditties turn bright and ornamental.
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"Back to You" looks home to Buffalo Springfield, with blink-and-you'll-miss-it pedal-steel flourishes amid acoustic-driven instrumental breaks. James's vocals trail off frequently before he finishes many syllables, but with lyrics about "running back" to a lover, it's an apt touch. Also adding to the record's steady, summery aesthetic is its multitude of guitar tracks. West Indian Girl lands far from guitar-centrism; look no further than the prog-techno trickery of "Lost Children" for proof. But the colorful riffs curling around each keyboard melody scream mildly drunk, barefoot rock. Here's to warmer fall weather.