Dave Bazan, Curse Your Branches. Bazan’s confessional songwriting is dark and intense, but his impeccable craft makes it a pleasure. Bazan has put out album after album (many as Pedro the Lion) of precisely described internal turmoil set to spare rock and roll—with delectable pop hooks, here more confident and lilting than ever. Branches is a post-evangelical twist on a breakup record, chronicling in messy detail Bazan’s traumatic loss of a deeply personal faith. It’s moving to hear him wrestle with questions of theodicy within the confines of personal-relationship theology: God is either his very good friend or his very bad enemy.