We’ve had a niggling question in the back of our minds this past year since Glaswegian ElectroPop trio Chvrches burst onto the scene. First coming to our attention early summer last year with Lies, we were immediately pretty enamoured. Chvrches are the kind of band we live for here on electronic rumors, but they’re not, however, the kind of thing that tends to get much mainstream attention. As the last year and a half have progressed, and Chvrches have released a string of singles and we’ve fallen hopelessly in love with everything they’ve released, but all the while had the concern in the periphery of our consciousness that (as has happened so often in the last five years) Chvrches were merely using ElectroPop to get attention and any day now would release an ‘authentic’ Indie-Rock record (they didn’t), or that their hype, mass press immersion and supersonic rise to fame was just the result of slick management and media manipulation. The question that has been tickling our consciousness is why were Chvrches getting all this attention over the countless other equally amazing ElectroPop acts we write about daily? Well we’ve been listing to Chvrches’ forthcoming début album, The Bones Of What You Believe, for the past week and we’ve pretty conclusively had that question answered.
Chvrches’ album is fucking stunning!
Seriously, nothing we write here can come close to conveying just how good this record is, but let’s have a crack at it anyway. There are many reasons Chvrches are so special and it’s not all that hard to pinpoint what they are. For a start the music seems to work on two levels constantly. There’s an immediate rush of breezy Pop vibes from a Chvrches tune that belies more complex musicianship. Catchy hooks and melodies rub shoulders with glitchy programming and twisted use of sound. Icy synths stack up to create something warm and cinematic in what seems like a contradiction, but feels so comfortable..
And then there’s Lauren’s vocals, which are some of the most brutal we’ve heard since the late 80s. Using this sweet, innocent voice to expose raw emotional wounds, the lyrical content of the songs contained within The Bones Of What You Believe are bitter and full of venom. It’s so refreshing, in this day-and-age of homogenised Pop tunes, to hear a vocalist really, truly, wear their heart on their sleeve and it makes the journey through The Bones Of What You Believe a much more personal, engrossing and ultimately enjoyable experience.
All the singles are present and correct on the album, their première track Lies (which sounds re-recorded for the album version), it’s follow up (and still our favourite Chvrches track) The Mother We Share, and the two proper singles, Recover and Gun. As we said, we’ve swiftly fallen for each of the single, particularly the album’s opener, the sweeping The Mother We Share, but to our surprise, and relief, Chvrches haven’t played all their trump cards on the singles. The album’s new tracks keep up the same level of quality, at times even exceeding it. We Sink’s energetic, distorted arpeggios serve as the soundtrack the The Bones Of What You Believe’s finest chorus. Cutting as much as it is anthemic, We Sink balances uplifting, infectious ElectroPop with a razor-sharp-wit vocals perfectly. It’s not all bubbly poison though, more pensive tracks like Tether, Lungs, You Caught The Light deliver an enigmatic beauty and atmospheric respite amongst the pounding beats. Under The Tide seems to inject to album with a healthy dose of optimism set to a euphoric dancefloor backing whilst elsewhere, Science/Visions is the closest Chvrches get to actual Industrial music, the track bordering on old school EBM at times. The bright Pop returns for By The Throat and epic Night Sky, a track that sums up all of Chvrches’ exposed emotional energy. There’s also a surprising amount of Martin Doherty singing on The Bones Of What You Believe. Surprising but not unwelcome, it only adds to the albums variety and the man can hold an impassioned Indie vocal line adequately.
In a year of awesome album release from the likes of Tesla Boy, Little Boots, Bastille, AlunaGeorge, Maya Jane Coles, Classixx, Pet Shop Boys, Marnie, Kisses, Charli XCX and Daft Punk, just to name a few, Chvrches’ The Bones Of What You Believe is easily our favourite full length record of the year. If we gave scores out of ten, The Bones Of What You Believe would have to be a ten. The record is released next Monday, buy it or you’re an idiot, simple as that.
♫ Chvrches – The Mother We Share
♫ Chvrches – Gun
♫ Chvrches – Lies
♫ Chvrches – Recover
Chvrches début full length record, The Bones Of What You Believe, is released 23rd September.
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