6/11/11

Owl City - All Things Bright And Beautiful (Listen & Download)

Artist: Owl City
Album: All Things Bright And Beautiful
Release Date: June 14, 2011
Genre: Electro-pop
Faze Grade: A-

Review

There is no mistaking the popularity of Owl City. After launching into the limelight with the mega hit-song "Fireflies," Adam Young, the sole man behind the band, has had his bar significantly raised. While "Ocean Eyes" was a great debut album, there is still the pressure to exceed the production quality of the previous. Honestly, given the completely random and surprise success of "Ocean Eyes," I was thinking a sophomore slump was in the works. However, despite my early musings and perhaps the overwhelming pressure, Young has brought another fine display of talent that easily tops anything else.

The first impression I got of "All Things Bright And Beautiful" was an immediate improvement over "Ocean Eyes." And this not to say "Ocean Eyes" was anything of a slump, far from it. For this to be so much more out of the box then before is a significant display of Young's talent. The synth sounds are more exotic, more stretched. Young's vocals goes beyond the normalized, monotone from before and he seems more passionate when singing this time around. And, as always, Young's lyrical genius is evident as he continues his frolicking word-smithing of puns and wordplay. While some may find his lyrics cheesy and kitsch, his lyrics are the strongest suit of his talent pool.

Standouts from the album include "Deer in the Headlights," "Kamikaze," and "Galaxies." Each song reflects a different talent of Young's. The echoing theme of nature, and God's hand in it, is apparent in not only the lyrics but the sound as well. The only real problem I had with the album was the song "Hospital Flowers." In my opinion, Young's style of electro-pop does not mesh well with slow tempo songs. It works for individual stanzas, where the tempo picks up for chorus or bridge lines (like "Angels") but for the whole song- as serious as it is- it's a bit draining. However, given everything else this album is far from disappointing. A-

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