Lithium Zion

Lithium Zion

Listening to Deaf Wish’s second album for the venerated indie label Sub Pop is like falling through a trapdoor and landing face-first on the dingy floor of a mid-’80s house show. Straddling the earthy punk of bands like Hüsker Dü and the Wipers with the explorations of Sonic Youth, Lithium Zion is, unapologetically, a throwback, but the Melbourne band wears the sound well, from dirges like “Hitachi Jackhammer” and “Easy” to the hooky, propulsive noise of “Deep Blue Cheated.” Best of all are the showcases for singer-guitarist Sarah Hardiman (“FFS,” “Smoke”), which strike a perfect balance between pretty and paint-peeling.

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