With their fourth album 'So Long, See You Tomorrow' at our fingertips, Bombay Bicycle Club have really set the bar sky high with another curve on their ever-changing music. Frontman Jack Steadman's travels across India have certainly opened his mind to new possibilities for the group's music, incorporating Bollywood samples into their first self-produced compilation; a jaw-dropper that has unsurprisingly become their first number one.
'So Long, See You Tomorrow' is something unlike anything they have previously done with strong inspiration taken from Indian culture. It's ironically new territory given how they are so named. From the very first track, the listener is hooked by the catchy choruses and the perfect rhythm for dancing. Opener 'Overdone' gives the best impression of what is to come; clever, captivating and soon to be your favourite song. The next track, 'It's Alright Now', effortlessly continues that sugary flavour, and it's on this particular number that vocalist Jack Steadman's voice is at its most flattering. His voice is unusual but very striking, and it complements the pace and lyrics of each track better than the last. Memorable still, 'Carry Me' really takes you off guard with its quick beats and the mesmerising echoes of guest vocalist Lucy Rose. The repetition of the lyrics "you carry me" give the song a purpose, aided by the feminine harmonies. Similarly, 'Whenever, Wherever' is a track with sweet intentions. It touches upon the concept of love, using repetition of "whenever you want it, wherever you want it" along with beautifully toned vocals, to give an easy enjoyable experience for your ears.
In contrast to these showstoppers, 'Home By Now' charmingly slows things down, while 'Luna' throws in a curveball with the largest dose of Indian inspiration yet and utilises fantastic input from second guest singer Rae Morris. The tracks seem to swerve in and out of this ethnic input, giving it some nice variation. 'Feel' wanders down the same road with its sample from Bollywood movie 'Nagin', the upbeat vibe refreshing and innovative. It is a hidden gem within the album: unique, attractive and totally fresh.
Each song ends softly, fading out with exquisite lyrics and a seamless pitch, causing multiple disappointments on the part of the enraptured listener who doesn't want any of them to end. 'Eyes Off You' is the gentlest of the album; very emotional and perhaps the perfect soundtrack to deep contemplation. Again, repetition and Lucy Rose's vocals have the most entrancing effect here. 'Come To' is another relaxed and likeable track and closer 'So Long, See You Tomorrow' is a terrific summary of the collection.
Bombay Bicycle Club have the unique ability to produce amazing content again and again, each album strikingly different from the last, yet still retaining their trademark individuality and serene style of music. It's amazing how much this album differs from debut release 'I Had The Blues But I Shook Them Loose', which was also amazingly put together, but focusing more on their passion for rock. Their ability to produce such different styles but retain the same demographic is astonishing. The only problem with their never-ending dream of constantly reinventing themselves is that they don't really possess a solid identity. From indie kids and folkies to dance rockers, who are they trying to reach? Perhaps 'So Long, See You Tomorrow' will mark some solidity in their sound. We hope so, as this album has really outdone itself.
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