“Aims for and achieves a more accomplished sound than their last effort and nicely eschews the classic second album pitfalls…”
Two Door Cinema Club | Beacon
It’s been an exciting summer for Two Door Cinema Club lead singer Alex Trimble. What with being hand picked by Danny Boyle to perform at the Olympics opening ceremony, rumours that Barrack Obama’s camp are huge fans of the three-piece, and a world-wide tour on the way, it seems the Irish trio are forging a flourishing reputation.
So the highly anticipated second album has arrived with a weight of expectation that it will not only match, but outdo the success of its predecessor. Rest assured however, as Beacon quickly reveals itself to be a well produced and distinctively authentic effort that sees the group seamlessly following on from Tourist History, building on their debut’s foundations to achieve a more mature and refined indie pop sound. Trimble has described the album as ‘deeper and definitely more emotional’ than their last effort and it’s true, yet it still retains their unwavering youthful positivity.
Opening anthem ‘New Year’ immediately explodes into life; a dreamy atmosphere compliments Trimble’s pure and innocent vocals and sets the scene for more to come. It’s clear to see that Trimble is missing home and this theme continues throughout the album ’i’ll be home for next year darling, ill be home for next year’. ‘Sun’ showcases more musical diversity than previously seen with an addictive chorus that leads om to ‘Someday’, where energetic instrumentation fills your ears and displays that same upbeat urgency used throughout Tourist History with a glistening guitar hook that becomes increasingly more infectious with repeat listens.
First release of the album, ‘Sleep Alone’ – revealed to be inspired by drug induced dreams – instantly reminds you of the Bravery’s ‘Honest Mistake’ in the momentum-building intro until washed away with Trimble’s dulcet vocals pierce through, creating a light, airy feel ontop of the spiky guitar pop. The track has the same engaging and earworm catchiness of Tourist History, suggesting their reluctance not to stray too far from their signature sound, but this time delving into more introspection and thought-provoking lyrics.
The album reaches a more reflective moment in ‘The World Is Watching’ , highlighting a new dimension to the band that displays more depth than anything heard to date. By experimenting with backing female vocals from London singer Valentia, it makes for an even more intimate listen. It is a quite beautiful mix. ‘Settle’ displays the more emotional dimension that Trimble hinted while emphasising his own isolation ‘this isnt home, I couldnt feel more alone’ while ‘Spring’ raises spirits momentarily before leading into the moody and more ominous ‘Pyramid’ which seems the most out of place song here.
All in all Two Door Cinema Club have managed to craft an entirely confident and self aware album that is incredibly, joyously accessible. Beacon aims for and achieves a more accomplished sound than their last effort and nicely eschews the second album pitfalls that many of Two Door’s contemporaries have fallen victim to.