Hunter Hunted

Ready for You

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The debut studio long player from the L.A.-based alt-rock/synth-pop duo, Ready for You finds Hunter Hunted (Michael Garner and Dan Chang) painting the nosebleed seats red with a meaty set of hook-laden, stadium-ready electro-pop that evokes fellow schillers of slick, "big moment" pop music like Imagine Dragons, Walk the Moon, and Passion Pit. Awash with seismic keyboard hooks, fat, club-ready percussion, and enough group-led "ooohhhs" to make Arcade Fire blush, the 11-track album houses no shortage of obvious singles, beginning with the shimmering, uplifting title track. Garner and Chang's sonic positivity extends to their lyrics as well, with only the wistful "Dora Maar" and closer "End of the World" flirting with darkness -- the latter treats the apocalypse as more of a giant dance party than a mirthless bloodbath. The thunderous "Blindside" fares a little better, offering up a near perfect distillation of earworm-infested radio pop and booming, midtempo dancefloor anthem, and the ukulele-led "Lovely Day" switches gears (sonically) and effortlessly tosses the rootsy, folk-pop stylings of bands like the Lumineers and American Authors into the hopper. To be honest, the duo do very little to try and differentiate themselves from the rest of the commercial grade smart-pop pack, but they've got the formula (melodic verse/beefy bridge/soaring chorus) down pat, and they execute with extreme non-prejudice. Ready for You is by no means a remarkable confection, but sometimes familiarity and sweetness goes hand in hand. That said, every sugar rush yields the inevitable crash.

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