Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Chapel Club // Good Together - Review

Two warning signs for this album. Firstly, this is astonishingly good music in my opinion; so don't read this or listen to Good Together if you don't like good music. Secondly, it isn't a continuation of sound: it isn't a second Palace. Not like when bands say "oh yeah, our next album is really different" and then it sounds a replica of the first LP freshly pressed of their fancy new 3D printer. Chapel Club should get one of them, and insert their creativity, love and passion for this album into it and hope it can be repeated.

A full 24 hours have passed and not one track has reached 1,000 listens yet, which is tragic - and "Just Kids" has the lowest at 400 - but this really does deserve listening to. Since their first album, they have hinted and gone in a different direction. Take the "Wintering" EP they added on to the deluxe edition of "Palace", their first LP. Soaring, high pitched vocals take the forefront, with a more soothing slow pace too. That is evident on here.

The record starts of with their mission statement: what people may call "pop songs", done good, with added emotion and meaning. "Sleep Alone" is a dancey future anthem with an insanely tight rhythm and really does show off the band. You can tell they have improved collectively, and the whole album shows this. Different band members take to the forefront, whether it be the whole band on "Good Together", the title track, or "Wordy" with it's bass driven melody. Guitar definitely is not present, or at least on the SoundCloud version of the LP, on most of the tracks. Don't shy away from that (see what I did there?). If you do, you're missing some of the best music I have heard without guitar.

My one criticism after going into their very much warning-labelled EP sample with open ears and heart, was the lyrics. I loved their first album for them: they connected in a way that was unexpected from the perhaps generic indie rock. But, the full album does not continue the trend of repetition that is seen on "Jenny Baby", perhaps the weakest of the album (if I was tied to a chainsaw and asked to pick one). "Wordy", appropriately titled, for the repetition of "wordy" throughout, but also for it's wealth of lyrics: "he sang the whole damn song, in the whole damn key". Echoes back to a conversation I had with Lewis in April. I'd like to think this was written about that very conversation, and after him already confirming way back in September last year that the album has been finished for a long time, I still would like to think that. Very much so.

"Perhaps my favourite of the album..." is the sentence I have not been looking forward to writing. I like it all; there is a lot of variety to this style of adventure. "Force you" is particularly lovely, but for completely different reasons to "Shy" or "Fruit Machine". I'd suggest you make up your own mind - unless you're a punk-enthusiast that is sitting their with a face like a deflating basketball. You should probably see a doctor about that too, although I won't force you (and again? No...?).

(Update: Scared is my favourite. Bowie-esque, and most like their old stuff. Excellent. This will probably change, I'm very indecisive.)

An odd ending to an "odd album". Lewis' words, not mine!

You can pre-order the album from iTunes, or from their shop - bonus tracks too:


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