Wye Oak started as two friends (Jenn Wasner and Andy Stack) recording songwriting demos together, but their basement project has since evolved to include tours of America and Europe, and a home on legendary label Merge Records. The Knot reflects that burgeoning confidence and comfort while maintaining the intimacy and emotional directness that are the band's hallmarks. A set of songs that sway, stretch, and scream while always reaching outward for personal connection. As ever, Andy Stack's production layers his own multi-instrumental arrangements over Jenn Wasner's woozy compositions, but musically, too, things sound more precise. There's less squalling feedback than before, but lingering violin and pedal steel bring out the droning Americana that has always informed Wye Oak's sound.