Brighten

King vs Queen

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On its 2007 debut, KING VS. QUEEN, Brighten offers up an assured set of energetic emo/punk-pop tunes. While the Chico, California-based trio excels at earnest lyrics and melodic vocals, Brighten's greatest asset is its riff-and-rhythm-heavy approach, as best revealed on the fierce, upbeat "More Vacations." Although the band has no shortage of likeminded peers, Brighten scores with its amiable and straightforward sound.

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