Kittie can be accused—quite justifiably—of making nü-metal safe for teenage girls. But perhaps the Ontario ladies have been feeling some regret: 2009’s In The Black continues to smooth out the heavy, grating edges in a way that lands the band squarely in the world of alt-metal. Though still retaining thrash roots, Kittie seems to be staking out new territory with more meticulous production that is also a lot catchier (as is often the case whenever an act moves away from straight metal). Morgan Lander doesn’t exactly sing, but she’s not just gnashing her vocal cords either; just a few more notches down the rock scale and you can start calling Kittie alt-pop. A new album, I’ve Failed You, is expected soon.