The Shins - 'The Worm's Heart'

5/10

In the middle of last year, The Shins returned after many years away to deliver their long-awaited new album 'Heartworms', a record that despite all the buzz failed in some parts to live up to the hype. Which may explain why some months later, they have chosen to release 'The Worm's Heart', a "flipped" version of the album with alternate versions of all the tracks that sees them mess around with different tempos and production.

When we first listened to 'Heartworms', it felt that The Shins had fallen into a formula of some kind. They knew what their fans expected and delivered that rather than something new and wild. So this new release seems to be part of what they were originally looking to create for their glorious comeback. But just like the original, 'The Worm's Heart' still seems to be missing that warmth we have gotten used to from James Mercer's songwriting, and falls far too much into the realm of self-indulgence.

While sonically, this new version is far more interesting and diverse than its original release, it still feels like it is lacking in something. A great idea overall, but without much of a focus and its huge novelty factor, this is really just an added gem for their most devoted fans and not much as a standalone release.

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