Letting Up Despite Great Faults frontman Mike Lee describes his music as "indie-pop electronica shoegaze," a phrase as elusive as his band's sound: a dreamlike mix of hazy guitars, moody synths and feathery vocals. Two years after the release of its self-titled debut, the band has landed another critical success with the EP Paper Crush.
A melancholy dissonance between teenage inferiority and uncontainable optimism courses through the band's wistful tunes, which find Lee sounding both nostalgic and caught in a moment that feels never-ending. "Teenage Tide," for example, revels in the highly saturated emotions of adolescence before abruptly self-destructing. The audio distorts as if the listener's headphones have become dislodged during a run home from school. Hear this song, and another from Paper Crush, on today's World Cafe: Next.