U.S. Girls Credit: Courtesy of 4AD

Chicago native Meg Remy began recording and performing noise collages as U.S. Girls roughly a decade ago, and through the years she’s inched her sound closer and closer to pop; her 2012 track “Work From Home” sounds like a doo-wop number that curdled during the recording process. Whatever the outcome, her songs serve as reminders of the dark underbelly that often hides beneath pop’s sheen. Now based in Toronto, Remy teamed up with area jazz band the Cosmic Range (which includes her husband, Maximillion Turnbull, aka Slim Twig, as a member) to make In a Poem Unlimited (4AD). It’s the cleanest, most sonically uplifting U.S. Girls album yet, but there’s plenty mutating within its postdisco dance cuts. Throughout the record Remy sings about women fighting back against suffocating patriarchy; on the steamy single “Velvet 4 Sale,” she wrestles with the thoughts that would convince someone to purchase a gun to protect herself from explosive men, her piercing, haunting voice acting as a beacon of safety in a foggy world.   v