|London Grammar — Truth Is a Beautiful Thing [Deluxe Edition]|
London Grammar — Truth Is a Beautiful Thing [Deluxe Edition]↑↓ Atmospheric electronic pop trio led by the big~voiced Hannah Reid, with influence from the xx and Florence + the Machine.
↑↓ “a blend of ambient, ethereal and classical sounds” with melancholy guitar, soaring vocals and plaintive lyrics.
↑↓ Truth Is A Beautiful Thing the follow up album to London Grammar’s critically acclaimed, platinum selling debut ‘If You Wait’.
↑↓ Includes the singles ‘Rooting For You’, ‘Big Picture’ and title track ‘Truth Is A Beautiful Thing’.Location: Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, England, United Kingdom
Album release: 9 Jun. 2017
Styles: Alternative/Indie Rock, Alternative Singer~Songwriter, Indie Electronic, Indie Pop
Record Label: Ministry Of Sound / Metal & Dust
01 Rooting For You 4:30
02 Big Picture 4:42
03 Wild Eyed 4:29
04 Oh Woman Oh Man 4:38
05 Hell to the Liars 6:05
06 Everyone Else 4:05
07 Non Believer 4:18
08 Bones of Ribbon 4:34
09 Who Am I 4:23
10 Leave the War With Me 5:05
11 Truth Is a Beautiful Thing 5:08
12 What a Day 4:54
13 Different Breeds 3:30
14 Control 3:05
15 Trials (Demo) 3:43
16 May the Best (Church Mix) 4:10
17 Rooting For You (Demo) 4:14
18 Bitter Sweet Symphony (Live at BBC Maida Vale) 3:54
↑↓ Dan Rothman
↑↓ Dot Major
↑↓ Hannah Reid
↑↓ Hannah Reid, Daniel Rothman, Dominic “Dot” Major
↑↓ Reid, Rothman, Major 17
↑↓ Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Richard Ashcroft 18
↑↓ Paul Epworth, MyRiot 1
↑↓ London Grammar, Jon Hopkins 2
↑↓ London Grammar, Epworth 4, 5, 11
↑↓ London Grammar, Greg Kurstin 10
↑↓ Epworth, MyRiot 17
↑↓ Martin Glover, The Verve 18About London Grammar
↑↓ English trio London Grammar combine sparse electronic pop in the model of the xx with dramatic, big~voiced lead singer Hannah Reid’s vocals, which evoke Annie Lennox and contemporaries like Florence Welch and Natasha Khan of Bat for Lashes. Reid and guitarist Dan Rothman met in the dorms of Nottingham University, where they began writing music together in 2009 and later added multi~instrumentalist Dot Major to complete the lineup. The following years saw them refine their sound with atmospheric electronics and subtle percussion, and they often played to rooms of no more than ten people. Their popularity rose with the 2012 release of “Hey Now,” which they uploaded to the Internet, instantly finding a digital cult following. Their fans were not just in the U.K., but also on the other side of the world in Australia, where their self~released 2013 debut EP, Metal & Dust, reached the top of the digital charts. The same year they signed to Ministry of Sound and the single “Wasting My Young Years” appeared as their first release on the label. The year 2013 also saw them play a sold~out show at the Islington Assembly Hall and make an appearance at the Great Escape Festival in Brighton. In September 2013, London Grammar released their eagerly awaited debut album, If You Wait, with the album debuting on the U.K. album chart at number two and hitting the Top 20 in Australia, New Zealand, France, and Ireland. With the album receiving positive reviews, the trio headed out in support of the release in 2014, culminating in two sell~out show’s at London’s Brixton Academy. That same year they also picked up two Ivor Novello awards for the single “Strong,” as well as two AIM awards for Breakthrough of the Year and Most Played Independent Act. After a whirlwind 2014, the trio retreated into their normal lives, rekindling friendships and writing new music. At the beginning of 2017 the group released the first fruits of those sessions, the single “Rooting for You,” which was followed a month later by the Jon Hopkins~produced “Big Picture.” Two more singles followed — “Truth Is a Beautiful Thing” and “Oh Woman Oh Man” — before their sophomore album, Truth Is a Beautiful Thing, was released. Working with the likes of Paul Epworth, Youth, and Hopkins, the album saw the trio taking their sparse electronic pop into more cinematic territory. ~ Scott Kerr & Rich Wilson
By Ed Nash / 06 JUNE 2017, 09:30 BST / Score: 8
↑↓ Writing the follow up to a successful debut album presents artists with the decision of whether to stick or twist. Should they change what people loved about them in the first place or keep to the path they’ve created?
↑↓ Both choices have seen many suffer from the dreaded ‘second album syndrome’, succumbing to either misguided reinventions or the law of diminishing returns. With Truth is a Beautiful Thing, the follow~up to 2013s If You Wait, London Grammar have done neither of those things. The accent is on evolution, not revolution, retaining the grace of their debut and adding subtle new colours to their palette in the process.
↑↓ If the involvement of heavyweight producers Greg Kurstin, Jon Hopkins and Paul Epworth prompted thoughts that their second record would have the kitchen sink thrown into the production mix, such concerns are allayed with the opening “Rooting For You”. Released on New Year’s Eve, its solemnity was a fitting closure to the annus horribilis of 2016 and eased 2017 in with a semblance of optimism.
↑↓ The opening line “Let winter break, let it burn until I see you again” encapsulates the blend of hope and yearning which London Grammar excel at. Elsewhere the lyrics still possess an inherent melancholy, yet never stray into wallowing, the line “I’d move the earth, but nothing made you want me better / There is nothing I can do but steal the moon” from “Oh Woman Oh Man” is especially poignant.
↑↓ If You Wait prompted comparisons with trip~hop but its real strength was founded on London Grammar’s sense of songcraft, that saw them winning the Ivor Novello award for song of the year with “Strong.” An equally assured focus on songwriting is at play here, layered with more ambitious arrangements that revel in minimalism. “Leave The War With Me” combines beautifully subtle interplay between Dan Rothman’s guitar and Dot Major’s drums and keyboards which creates room for Hannah Reid’s voice, that sounds both careworn and protective, to soar over the top.
↑↓ “Hell To The Liars” is a lovely slow build, carefully and assiduously arranged, as Reid’s voice stretches words over notes, underpinned by a hushed string arrangement. String sections are often thrown onto records at the expense of intricacy, but here they add a lustrousness that embellishes rather than submerges the song.
↑↓ There are moments that don’t hit the heights, “Non Believer” is built around a tremendous chorus yet the verse doesn’t quite take off and the addition of a vocoder feels unnecessary given the quality of Reid’s singing. Whereas the vocal effects on “Metal and Dust” added to the technicolour maelstrom of the outro, here it’s the one time they sound over~produced.
↑↓ It proves to be a minor slip, the following “Bones of Ribbon” is subtly anthemic, built on a repeated drum pattern with the verse providing a fluid build to the chorus, which is signified by a slight tweak in the vocal melody, with the guitar and keyboard motifs adding a deft texture.
↑↓ As well as exploring matters of the heart, the lyrics make several references to escape. On “Wild Eyed” Reid sings “I am safe with you, far away from here” and the closing title track returns to the theme, “Hide you somewhere they don’t know…” ushering the record out where it began with understated elegance. Lyrically it’s a tale of redemption at the end of a long road travelled, perhaps a reference to the near four~year gap since their debut.
↑↓ With Truth is a Beautiful Thing London Grammar have created a world that knows when to be expansive and when to be introspective, building on their DNA and adding more dextrous, yet suitably restrained arrangements. It shows second albums don’t have to be disappointments, that artists can continue walk their own rarefied path and in the process get better the further down the road they get. ↑↓ https://www.thelineofbestfit.com/
|London Grammar — Truth Is a Beautiful Thing [Deluxe Edition]|