Our Top 10 Sleigh Bells songs list presents ten great rock and roll songs from a band from New York City who were first formed as a duo in the late 2000s. Hailing from the great borough of Brooklyn, New York, known once for its egg creams and still celebrating it’s Coney Island Nathan’s Hot Dogs along with a melting pot of diverse ethnicities making it one of the greatest boroughs in the city, Sleigh Bells music is just as diverse and inspired as the borough they are from.
It seems now that bands and artists that come of age in the 2000s and 2010s are inspired by a lot more rock and roll than artists who came of age in the 70s and 80s. There’s just so much more musical history to be inspired by. Seventies artists had the 60s and the 50s to be inspired by and groups like The Beatles, Rolling Stones and Bob Dylan. Eighties artists had the 70s, 60s and 50s that added artists like Bruce Springsteen, Elton John, and The Ramones. Every decade adds another 10 years of inspiration. So when one listens to a band like Sleigh Bells, you hear so many different styles of music from pop too punk to electro-punk to experimental to alternative to industrial to heavy metal and also a whole lot of glam. To really describe the music of Sleigh Bells one has to utilize all those different genres of music. And then you get to a point where you just say, “hey wait wait a second, this just sounds like……… Sleigh Bells!”
The duo of Sleigh Bells consists of guitarist Derek Edward Miller and vocalist Alexis Krauss. We first discovered the band Sleigh Bells from the vocals that Alexis Krauss did on the Third Eye Blind song entitled “Screamer.” Her appearance on that track led us to do some research and we discovered this great band Sleigh Bells. As we are from New York City, it was even more special to find out they were from New York City too.
The group Sleigh Bells released their first album in the Spring of 2010 entitled Treats. Alexis and Derek would follow up that album with their sophomore record entitled Reign Of Terror which was released two years after their debut album in the winter of 2012. As their fan base began to grow, the group released their third album in October of 2013 entitled Bitter Rivals. Three years later the group returned with their fourth and final album as of this writing called Jessica Rabbit in 2016.
Our Top 10 Sleigh Bells songs presents ten of our favorite Sleigh Bells songs from this very original sounding and wonderful band.
# 10 – I Can Only Stare
We open up our Sleigh Bells songs ranked list with this great song and video entitled “I Can Only Stare.” You can’t help but really respect and and be inspired by an independent band like Sleigh Bells that does it all by themselves and gets the job done well. Great song and video. Very early 80s sounding in the synthesizers used. Reminds me a little bit of Yazoo. The bride pouring gas on herself is pretty sick. That look at the end is chilling. Those eyes cut right through you like a beautiful female villian in a Vincent Price movie.
# 9 – Where Did You Sleep Last Night
We wanted to get to this one right away. This great cover version of the song “Where Did You Sleep Last Night,” was released by Sleigh Bells in 2019. It appears on the soundtrack to the motion picture entitled The Rhythm Section. The film was released in 2020 and starred the beautiful Blake Lively as well as Jude Law. The song itself is pretty old dating back to the 19th century and often also being referred to as “In The Pines.”
With a song as old as “Where Did You Sleep Last Night,” it’s obvious that it would have been covered by hundreds of artists. Some of the most popular covers of the songs included versions done by Nirvana, which did a variation of the standard version done by Lead Belly. Other well known versions included covers by The Grateful Dead, Dolly Parton, Loretta Lynn and a cool version done by The Pretty Things .
# 8 – Demons
The opening guitar lick on this one sounds like the band Boston. But of course that all changes as the sound of those grunge fueled drums smashes the 70s classic rock straight out the door. Nonetheless its seems like the Boston riff is on a loop that continues through the song, or the dude just has great timing. Alexis Krauss tears it up on the vocals throughout the rest of the song.
# 7 – Riot Rhythm
Well this one is perfectly titled. Lots of drums, lots of guitar and a killer very cool vocal by Alexis Krauss.
# 6 – Tell Em
In the number six spot on our Sleigh Bells songs list is the duo of Derek E. Miller and Alexis Krauss’ first single release of their career entitled “Tell Em.” The song was released in 2010. As of this writing in 2021, it is the band’s only single to chart in the United Kingdom. While the band has multiple songs that have charted in Mexico, they have yet to break into any of the US Billboard singles charts. However their albums have all had success on the Billboard Rock albums charts.
# 5 – It’s Just Us Now
At the halfway point on our Sleigh Bells songs list we turn to this heavy rocking sounding song entitled “It’s Just Us Now.” We love the rhythm changes that happen very unexpectedly throughout the song. Very cool stuff.
# 4 – And Saints
The sound of early 80s synthesizers and arpeggiators open this very dark song. The video is also reminiscent of Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” in the the lighting used and those scary cheerleaders only add to the creepiness of the song. The pop culture of The Purge seems to have infiltrated modern music.
# 3 – Infinity Guitars
In the number three spot on our Sleigh Bells songs list we watch Derek and Allexis walk around Brooklyn singing this great song entitled “Infinity Guitars.” This is a very addicting song and once again we are greeted with cheerleaders in a Sleigh Bells video. But of course there debut album featured a cover full of cheerleaders.
# 2 -Rill Rill
The song “Rill Rill” sort of stands as the band’s most pop oriented song they have released as a single. It’s got a bit of a 6os vibe happening in the melody and vocals line.”Rill Rill,” was the third single released from their debut album entitled Treats in 2010. The song charted in Mexico where the band seems very popular. This is one that we really dig.
# 1 – Comeback Kid
We close out our Sleigh Bells songs list with our favorite Sleigh Bells songs entitled “Comeback Kid.” Alexis Krauss has an incredibly strong presence on the screen. We wonder if we will be seeing her on the silver screen because she just lights up the camera in so many ways. The song Comeback Kid was released on Alexis and Derek’s second album entitled Reign of Terror. Great song, great video, great band!
Top 10 Sleigh Bells songs ranked article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2021
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