On the follow-up to their buzzy debut Birdseed Shirt, this Washington, D.C.-based group crafts a bewitching blend of lo-fi art-rock, surf balladry, fuzzed-out skronk, comfy funk and soaring symphonic anthems. Singer-guitarist Daniel Scheuerman has said in interviews that he mines his personal life for his lyrics but the newly-married creative writing major’s words never feel like he’s an oversharing Twitter obsessive. Is the luscious “Bedbedbedbedbed” a romantic come-hither ballad for a lover — or a dirge about not wanting to get out of bed in the morning? Scheuerman’s lyrical vagueness keeps these tunes captivating.
Deleted Scenes are also total studio nerds — they’ve only released two albums since forming in 2005 — and each cut on Young People’s Church of the Air sounds as if it was crafted with the precision of Steely Dan but with one-third of the studio budget. Best are their more light-hearted moments. “What an Awesome Backhanded Compliment” packs serious Led Zep-style muscle and “Future of Hair Metal” offers a stylish update of booty-shaking go-go music.