If I were to introduce you to my sister I’d probably say: “She hates loud noises, dark spaces, and people.” She’s not a fan of music and her opinions of the medium range from complete indifference to downright cynicism. It’s a surprise to anyone when she finds a band she likes – she’s only bought two albums in the past few years: Prides’ The Way Back Up, and Chvrches’ Every Open Eye.
The latter is the synth-pop trio’s sophomore release, following the triumphant debut The Bones Of What You Believe. Chvrches are only getting stronger, erasing their self-doubt and replacing it with fierce confidence and belief in what they do. If that’s not compelling, what is?
‘Never Ending Circles’ and ‘Leave a Trace’ are the first two singles on the album, immediately grabbing your attention with their strong tempo and lyrics that cut through the façade. Lauren Mayberry’s voice adds a sense of vulnerability to her words, providing a stark contrast to the polished electronic pop music, perfected by bandmates Iain Cook and Martin Doherty.
The song that stands out on this album is ‘Make Them Gold’; it’s no longer us v. them, but ‘we’, as it offers a sense of unity and accomplishment with its optmistic lyrics. It’s a song that manages to convince you that everything is going to be okay, painting a golden light at the end of the lonely tunnel.
You’ve just caught your breath and you’re thrown into ‘Clearest Blue’, which picks up the tempo once more and throws you into a track that will get your heart pounding. ‘Empty Threat’ is another glittering star on this album; I’ve often said that the best songs are the ones you dance to when your heart is breaking, and these two definitely fall into that category.
‘Bury It’ is the ultimate “fuck you” to anyone who is trying to bring you down. “I am catching up, and I am seeing red” marks a moment of betrayal yet Chvrches opt for the high road, keeping their promises and their dignity as they find treachery on their path.
Prides, that other Scottish synth-pop trio, ended their debut album with ‘Kite String and the Anchor Rope’, a melancholic ballad that echoes the peaceful moments after a night has fallen to its knees. It seems Chvrches have followed suit with ‘Afterglow’, a song that shimmers with serenity and brings the album to a natural close.
Every Open Eye is an album of defiance, showcasing the trio’s confidence as they navigate the music industry, and the world, on their own terms.
Watch the video to ‘Leave A Trace’ below:
Every Open Eye was released on 25th September 2015.