The logistics surrounding the Jealous Sound's debut album, Kill Them With Kindness, could have very well broken up the band. Bandmembers came and went and label politics nearly wrecked the SoCal foursome's plans for a solid first album, but the frustration and passion of those three years since the release of their debut EP are captured in this record. As much as you can hear it and feel it, you can taste the bitter desire behind the Jealous Sound's emo-tinged rock sound. Producer Tim O'Heir singles out the trio guitar work of Blair Shehan, John McGinnis, and Pedro Benito and emphasizes their man-size playing, signifying the Jealous Sound's readied confidence. Tony Palermo's session work behind the drums rounds out the album's infectious energy, particularly on "The Gift Horse." Shehan's signature scream during his Knapsack days is scaled down a bit for a heart-rending tone similar to Catherine Wheel's Rob Dickinson and the rollicking of "Hope for Us" and "Naive" showcases the Jealous Sound's lovely resilience. Kill Them With Kindness observes personal heartbreak and all of its apprehensions without being redundant. The Jealous Sound had enough time to prepare for this album, so the lack of experience of recording it isn't really there. What's obvious is how this band wanted to make a great record and Kill Them With Kindness is polished and tight in all the right places. The candied pop of "Does That Make Sense" is evidence of that.
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AllMusic Review by MacKenzie Wilson