Initial Thoughts - Los Campesinos: Hello Sadness

by - Monday, November 14, 2011

Now I'm on reading week, I really want to keep this blog up to scratch and current . However, because of the sheer craziness of my life right now and the amount of work I have to do for uni , I'm not getting to do nearly enough album reviews as I'd like, and so I'm starting this new thing called Initial Thoughts. Hopefully it should allow me to talk about the new releases I'm enjoying without having to worry about structures and covering all bases.

So, to start it off, I want to talk about Los Campesinos. I have a lot of friends highly enamoured with this band, but I have to admit it took me a long while to 'get' them. Having met them all back in 2009, I knew they were deeply lovely people and as somebody who believes lyrics to be of the utmost importance, I had a lot of respect for their main writer Gareth and the complexity of his wording, but I always found them a little too cacophonous to really embrace them.

All that aside, I think you'd be hard pressed to find a harder working band in today's day and age. Today, the bands fourth album in as many years was released, and although I'm only one full listen in (hence the initial thoughts), I can already conclude that 'Hello Sadness' is nothing short of wonderful. They appear finally to have found their internal strength as a band: perfectly miserable pop songs with original and relatable metaphors. Aping Arcade Fire not only in the size of their line up but in the way around a soaring chorus, the title track in particular is remarkably uplifting considering it's subject matter, shades of The Smiths and The Cure also present. Where previously it sometimes felt that they were cramming instruments in for the sake of experimentation, each track now contains enough space and dynamic to work commercially whilst staying true to their underground following. I'm pretty sad that I didn't make it to their leeds show on Friday now, but on the strength of this new material, I shouldn't think it'll be too long before they return to British shores.

Hello Sadness by Los Campesinos!

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