We All Have Hooks for Hands gives renewed respect to the falsetto. Although the band name sounds suited for a lame third-generation death-metal band, this Sioux Falls-based nine-piece actually plays loveable, folky power pop. Who knew such overwhelming positivity could come from the dusty plains of South Dakota?
The Shape of Energy is the band’s second release, and We All Have Hooks for Hands’ constant touring has helped the band not only develop a tight basic sound, but also the confidence to take melodic chances. Songs are layered, with three guitarists weaving in and out of main riffs to create melodic colors that reveal their facets with each listen. Opener “Howling and Bellowing” swirls itself into an epic, with the falsetto helping us reach a cathartic climax that is completely satisfying. “Be Love, Be Wild,” “Something to Live For,” “Sea That Holds You” all keep the bottom simple, and from there explode into pure pop goodness.
Too much? Not really. We All Have Hooks for Hands aims for the sort of Beatle-esque harmonic peaks that American bands from the Beach Boys to Long Riders to Huskers aimed at. Expect a lot and get a lot here.