Friday, October 07, 2011

HEAR THIS: Florence "Shakes It"

And every demon wants his pound of flesh
But I like to keep some things to myself
I like to keep my issues strong
It's always darkest before the dawn...
And it's hard to dance
With a devil on your back
So shake him off...

-"Shake It Out", Florence + The Machine

I know a lot of people probably think that Florence Welch and her band of merry musicians might be a little too high-brow pop for me to appreciate it. To the haters, I'm shaking you and that mentality off.

Lungs was one of the most solid debut albums we've seen in a really long time. It was so often hyped (and critically, too), it was the type of thing I almost wanted to steer clear off because it seemed almost too hipster avante-garde, but just one listen of "Dog Days Are Over" and it was literally over for me. Add to the list "You've Got the Love", "Kiss With A Fist", "Cosmic Love" and "Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up)" -- in singles alone, Lungs is literally stacked with firepower. It's clear that Florence has a very distinct musical identity, and while her music is still very commercial accessible, she also markedly stands out in a world full of Auto-Tuned sexpots. "Shake It Out" is the first real offering from her upcoming sophomore album, Ceremonials, following the promotional "What the Water Gave Me," which seemed to turn many off (but not yours truly). 

That being said, "Shake" is familiar Florence without feeling like a total retread of what Lungs did so well. The best way to describe the song is as one large almost-five-minute-long crescendo, transforming what initially starts off as slightly ominious and haunting to a sunny, scream-along anthem. Holy Drumkit, Batman -- this is one for the books. If you aren't tapping your foot by the song's end, you should probably have that checked. Just saying.

1 comment:

John said...

Lungs was such a great album, but this new one sounds EPIC from the samples. Someone hit their stride, and a year from now we'll be talking about her Grammy nominations.

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