Imagine Nancy Sinatra's "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'" as a political rallying cry instead of a sultry kiss-off, and you have an idea behind The Mynabirds' Generals. The title track on the band's second LP is a call to action so catchy in its delivery, and yet so vague in its politics, that it could be the soundtrack to either an Occupy rally or a PTA meeting.
Credit leader Laura Burhenn for making a record that seethes with personal and global discontent (see "Karma Debt" for a little of each) while never coming off as preachy or dated. Generals' rich and sinister tone is thanks in part to producer Richard Swift, who records bands when he's not busy as a solo artist or as the new keyboardist for The Shins. -- Christian Schaeffer