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Fight Bite

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Denton, TX’s duo Fight Bite consist of vocalists/keyboardists Jeff Louis and Leanne Macomber, who craft a synth and drum machine-driven haze reminiscent of late-’80s/early-’90s acts like Mazzy Star and This Mortal Coil (as well as contemporaries like Beach House, Vivian Girls). Macomber began writing what would become Fight Bite songs that didn’t fit the mood of the louder, more rock-oriented bands she was in at the time; after seeing Louis’ band Teenage Symphony play, she asked him if he would collaborate with her. They began recording in 2007 and their first single, Swissex Lover, earned praise from blogs such as Stereogum and Gorilla vs. Bear. The band made their full-length debut, Emerald Eyes, available for purchase that summer, and it was officially released that fall.

Fight Bite first made a name for themselves in 2008 with their blog-beloved single “Swissex Lover”, and that gossamer duet is still the standout: Macomber’s whispery voice leaks into the shimmering keyboards, whose drowsy calliope tones are almost indistinguishable from Jeff Louis’ faraway backing vocals. Most of the nine other tracks on the collection follow a similar formula: slow, haunting keyboard chords fill up the track leaving little room for the tinny percussion or watery, remote singing that spills into a wash of diaphanous melody. Specific lyrics are, therefore, hard to identify, but clearly these are bruised love songs, as the ache is palpable.

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