Wednesday, 23 October 2013

CHVRCHES - The Bones of What You Believe


Released: September 20, 2013
Score: 92/100

It's been a great year for music with new bands popping up faster than you can keep track of. A summer of festivals geared towards future headliners and the next wave of great bands. Nearing the end of the year and 2013 is still churning out great debut albums at a steady pace like the eagerly anticipated debut 'Days Are Gone' from haim which received great critical acclaim. And now we have 'The Bones Of What You Believe'. The stunning first album from the Glasgow three piece. The LP has been well received by critics and reviewers all over, it's been in every culture and music magazine trying to keep up with the new music, so if you haven't heard of this band by now then seriously where have you been. You're missing out.

I first heard CHVRCHES when I went to see a different band called Passion Pit live in Glasgow and they were the support. I didn't know any of their music but I had read about them in a recent NME. My friend promised me they were good and so I watched them with anticipation. There stood Lauren Mayberry, with her weird eye make up and mic in hand pouring her heart into beautiful lyrics in their first single recover "but if I recover, will you be my comfort?". I was impressed and instantly liked them although little did I know that almost a year later they were going to release a masterpiece of an album. After that gig I heard very little about them until someone mentioned their song recover and I downloaded it. I listened to it on repeat. I loved everything about it, the meaningful lyrics which flow from Lauren's delicate voice intensified the sharp synth and booming drum beats. The single offered a very promising taste from their album and really opened peoples eyes to this breaking through Glasgow trio.

The buzz had started for CHVRCHES new album and it only got better with the next single 'Gun' being as equally as successful. It kept true to their winning formula which seemed to be dreamy synths, pounding drums and poignant lyrics. 'Gun' shows a more spiteful side of Lauren in the lyrics "did it make you feel so clever? Did you wear it on your sleeve?" or "hide, hide I'll burn your bridges". The story seems to tell of heartbreak manifesting itself in these lyrics of vengeance "it's you I'll
come for". The fourth and final single 'Under The Tide' was a pleasant surprise. Instead of Lauren singing she seemed to have handed the mic to her two male counterparts. Still with excellent backing music and great lyrics. You can hear the Scottish accent much stronger in the male voices and adds to the song providing a perfect contrast to the previous singles. And with that the wait was almost over for 'The Bones Of What You Believe'. 

When the album arrived the anticipation turned to joy. The album got better and better. My favourite song in the album is the first track 'The Mother We Share' which was also the bands first single in November 2012. The drums and synths were as effective as always in supporting Lauren Mayberrys beautiful voice. The lyrics are great however not the best in the album. That award in my opinion goes to track number two 'We Sink' with the simple yet brilliant "if we sink we lift our love" implying a failing relationship trying to get back to a better time. The album brilliantly maintains this consistent quality which all adds up to make it a fantastic album. 

It's no surprise that this band is making a huge impact already. They've came a long way from being the support band that people didn't know to this sensation. It's onwards and upwards for CHVRCHES as they set their sights high and rightly so. They've managed to sell out the Barrowlands for their tour in March. I've got my ticket and this time seeing them I'll be well aware of their excellent new album.

- Stephen Fleming

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