The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Tuesday December 7th

Music Review: The Pains of Being Pure at Heart

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart is back — poppier and catchier than ever with the release of its third record Days of Abandon. A three-year absence has been beneficial for the group, the upbeat instrumentation and falsetto melodies combining for arguably its best album yet.

Despite opening with the melancholic and acoustic-based “Art Smock,” the record is gloriously cheerful on tracks like “Simple and Sure,” a buoyant love song with fantastic female backing vocals and relatable lyrics about relationships. “Kelly” continues the lively first half, led by vocalist Peggy Wang-East in a breezy number perfect for the summer.


Days of Abandon

Pop rock


One of the greatest aspects of this record is its amazing consistency throughout. There is not a mediocre song among the bunch. From the six-minute epic “Beautiful You” to progressive rock ballad “Coral and Gold,” the band never falters.

The topic of the ups-and-downs of love and relationships does grow a little wearisome, as does the occasional overproduction with electronics and vocals. For example, “Until the Sun Explodes” is dominated by too many instruments and too much noise.

The band closes out with “The Asp at My Chest,” another well-executed love song, aided by dual singing by Kip Berman and Wang-East and uplifting horns.

The record is a fun listen in a brief ten songs, knowing well not to wear out its welcome. The tracks may be too similar and indistinguishable here and there, but they are just so light and enjoyable, it’s hard not to be satisfied with Days of Abandon.

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