The second album for any artist is known notoriously as the hardest album to make, especially if you are following up a chart-breaking debut.
Scottish trio, CHVRCHES seem to have broken the rules with Every Open Eye.
Every Open Eye is an eleven track electro-pop masterpiece with melodies and synth beats that burrow their way into your head with the infectiously catchy hooks and stellar vocals.
Opening track, ‘Never Ending Circles’ is a soft introduction, mirroring early CHVRCHES tracks building into a powerful chorus with mesmerising beats before singer, Lauren Mayberry slows the track down so we can hear the tender tones of her voice.
‘Leave A Trace’ is the lead single and packages the power enclosed on Every Open Eye with fighting talk lyrics and sharp, yet mystical, disco beats; Mayberry sings “I will wipe the salt off my skin, and I’ll admit that I got it wrong” as the track begs you to attempt and not dance along.
The trio has tried to relive 80’s disco on ‘Clearest Blue’ with the synth riff mimicking Depeche Mode’s classic ‘Just Can’t Get Enough’; the track has a killer synth build up before Mayberry shouts, “will you meet me more than half way?” for a feisty drop into what could become an EDM anthem.
Every Open Eye falls slightly short on some of the tracks, in particular ‘High Enough To Carry You Over’ where Mayberry steps back from the vocals and is ultimately where the track loses that special something.
In a more subdued and gothic corner of the album, ‘High Enough To Carry You Over’ is slightly monotonous lacking the liveliness of the other track on offer, with more psychedelic and tender beats.
The stark contrast of ‘Bury It’ and ‘Afterglow’ elegantly closes the album with an uplifting, dance along in ‘Bury It’ and mellow and subdued ending with ‘Afterglow’, showcasing the elegant, haunting tones in Mulberry’s voice.
CHVRCHES have come a long way since their debut, The Bones of What You Believe, but have stuck to the recipe that made the album such a success; with memorable lyrics, haunting and captivating beats that everyone can dance along to.
Every Open Eye is a stellar second album with clear progression from the band with a plethora of songs that will bode well on a live stage.
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Words: Lorne Gillies