Seven years after making their first splash, the Canadian girls of Kittie still have a career -- and it's finally on an upswing. Spit
, the group's underrated 2000 debut, was arguably one of the top five albums of the nu-metal era. Singer-guitarist Morgan Lander, then a teenager, alternated sweet melodies and guttural outbursts seething with a righteous, articulate feminine fury. On 2001's Oracle
, they sacrificed subtlety for metal cred, but just sounded like so many creatively challenged guys aping Pantera. On 2004's awkward Until the End
, the band couldn't decide whether it wanted to rock, get back in touch with its tender side, or just quit. Half the players did bail, and Morgan and drummer Mercedes Lander (Morgan's younger sister) regrouped respectably for the new Funeral for Yesterday
"We were able to redefine who we were as a band," says Morgan. "Mercedes is using her ability more creatively, rather than just the mindless metal drumming. I think this album is me coming into my own voice and finally learning how to use it. We're trying to get away from the metalcore screaming, more going back to the '80s, where you can be metal and still sing."
This simply means the band is playing creative metal that just rocks.