Artist : London Grammar
Genre : Emo, Indie, Rock, Pop
Boring and beautiful are not exactly complimentary adjectives when paired together, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing when it comes to describing London Grammar’s debut studio effort.
What this trio of Nottingham University alumni does is a kind of muted grandeur that relies not so much on bombast, as it does on emotive resonance. Opening track Hey Now, with its languid build-up and atmospheric guitar, is a testament of vocalist Hannah Reid, guitarist Daniel Rothman and producer Dot Major’s understated genius.
For most part though, the album indulges in a deliberate restraint that’s incredibly frustrating at times.Wasting My Young Years, with its sombre cinematic intro and steady momentum suggests a soaring climax that never quite came.
But in an age of Adele-esque emotional excess, London Grammar hints at an inoffensive and often times, more subdued disposition. When Reid sings about heartaches (Strong), you know it’s not the end of the world. And when she does obsession (Flickers), it isn’t to the point of desperation.
“I am the fine idea you crave/ I live and breathe under the moon/ And when you cross that bridge/ I’ll come find you,” Reid declares over delicate guitar riffs on Stay Awake.
And that pretty much encapsulates this debut.
There’s no resolve and you’ll have to be content meeting the music in the middle. But if you’re patient, it will surprise.