Snow Patrol Returns And Remains True To Their Easy Listening Roots
Published: Wednesday, January 18, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 19:01
After a three year hiatus, Snow Patrol celebrated the new year by releasing their sixth album, Fallen Empires: a powerful collection of diverse but easy-listening alternative rock tracks. With this artistic compilation, the band extends their musical palette by incorporating wholesome chorale voices, experimenting with electronic instruments, and including folk-like musical accompaniment that provides pleasing music for every listener, except perhaps the avid dub-step fanatic or R&B fiend. Snow Patrol, which finds its roots at the University of Dundee in Northern Ireland, chose each musical medium wisely. Empires clearly shows off the band's creativity and dedication as an album that is captivating in its entirety.
Lead singer Gary Lightbody's voice surfaces each song with a smooth sound that hypnotizes the listener into a reminiscent state, but not one full of gloom and regret over lost love. Instead, the band's optimistic melodies lead your thoughts from regretful romance to thoughts of the endless possibilities you have now, despite lost love and repentance. The album's already popular single "Called Out In the Dark" is a great example of this. With a chorus repeating the supportive message, "We are listening and we're not blind / This is your life, this is your time," this upbeat track graces you with a refreshing jolt of entitlement to your existence. Its repetitive and inspirational mantra will alter your state of mind, whether or not you welcome it, and with a general population fearful of the current unpredictable state of society, this mantra should be welcomed readily.
The opening track "I'll Never Let Go" cannot be overlooked either. It begins with simple electronic beats, which are later accompanied by Gary's genial vocals. Soon drums, bass, and electric guitar join him. They create a product that sounds nearly flawless in the alternative rock genre. By the end of this empowering track you are enjoying a feel-good rock band song similar to Snow Patrol's past hits "Open Your Eyes" and "Crack the Shutters."
Snow Patrol produced a title track, "Fallen Empires" that accomplishes what I believe to be a new genre of alternative rock–"folk rock." This track is stylistically similar to songs by the recently popular folk-masters Mumford & Sons, but the typical electric guitar and bass lines used in all of Snow Patrol's masterpieces are still heard alongside the folk references. Surprisingly, Snow Patrol pulls off "folk rock" with poise. This is a respectable accomplishment for a band that seemed permanently set in its artistic genre before Empires' release last week.
"The President" is a gentle song placed near the album's finish. Lightbody sings of a specific heartbreak and dabbles upon the topic of regret. If and when you've experienced lost love you will immediately relate to this truth-baring and emotion-rendering track. Snow Patrol paints a picture of post-relationship passion perfectly as the melody builds up to a climax. If you listen closely to the honest lyrics while the instruments fade out, you will notice that Lightbody reaches an important resolution as the track concludes.
It is apparent that Snow Patrol arranged each of their ingenious songs in a deliberate order to create an album that inspires, and I am certain that with the conclusion of Fallen Empires, you will feel ready to tackle anything and everything that comes your way.