Friday, October 21, 2011

Album Review: Florence and The Machine - Ceremonials

Ceremonials is the second album from British singer/songwriter Florence and The Machine. I really dug her debut album Lungs, I found her voice incredible and the music behind it equally as great. I also got the chance to see her live, such a great gig and a moment where she shone as a seriously talented artist. This album was certainly going to show how great she is, one I hoped would be a success.

There is very little that shall be said about the vocals, they are incredible and just so strong that you gravitate towards it instantly. When you hear it on record you realise its strong, but once you hear it live do you truly realise its beauty and strength. The vocals are almost overwhelming as you can't prepare yourself the experience. This album is jam packed full of "epics" the songs are massive in sound, the songs at times are over the top and I kind of feel overwhelmed at many points.

Only If For The Night is the album opener and it brings the HEAT from track one, slow in its beginnings it eventually hits mammoth proportions in sound. Unlike Lungs this album is more piano, string section, drums and not so much guitar which is a slight shame cause songs like Kiss With A Fist had a simple riff that picked the tempo of that song up perfectly. The songs on this are long with only one track under 4 minutes, this really does allow tracks to build up to epic moments nicely.

Lungs at times seemed like it was a bunch of tracks from different influences and while that album stilled flowed reasonably well, this one has a closer resemblance song to song which made things easier when listening. One of my favourite tracks on this album is What The Water Gave Me, the subtle bass and guitar throughout the track is nice the slow builds to the chorus which unleashes the sound is what makes this song and many others on this album.

Another of the songs I really enjoyed was that of No Light No Light the keys so soft to begin the song as Florence starts singing, the harp having its moment before this song explodes out. I really did enjoy a more pronounced harp in this song as opposed to a much more buried sound in other tracks. Seven Devils gives off a little bit of darkm, doom and gloom piece throughout its atmosphere is far sadder to those songs before it. The album doesn't lack variety Spectrum is a much more upbeat, fun track showing Florence has variation and ability to not just be a singer of slow building epics that feature heavily on this album.

This album is fantastic, I really do enjoy it, No Light NO Light and What The Water Gave Me are two of my favourites on this. The album at times overwhelmed me for good and bad, sometimes I wished she was a little more understated after all we all know she has an amazing voice. The music behind her like Lungs is immense and while not that similar to Lungs I have found it interesting a the perfect foil for her voice throughout.

Overall Rating: 8.5/10

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