The 2011 debut from electro-pop rock group AWOLNATION (I’ll call them Awolnation from here on in…) is still a record that holds it’s own when the decision of what to listen to comes around, every day. Formed by Aaron Bruno, the band offer up something which is still rather spectacular and incredibly fresh.
The deluxe album offers up a rather hearty 21 tracks to divulge in – Each with its own unique sound and offering. Ringing the same bells that Enter Shikari did a few years back, when Google searches of ‘What genre are Shikari’ probably quadrupled as they hit more mainstream popularity – Awolnation similarly offer up a very contrasting, eclectic, mix of powerful sounds and an array of styles.
“Yeah, we get it. They’re fucking diverse. Get on with it.”
Notable tracks on the album come in the shape of ‘Burn It Down’, ‘Sail’, ‘Not Your Fault’, ‘Wake Up’ and ‘All I Need’. After 4/5 impressive but not really lets-play-that-again-Ish tracks, Burn It Down offers up one of the fastest and most aggressive songs on the album, as is hinted at by the angry adolescent title. Amidst the erratic drum rolls and snare crashes scurries a chunky keyboard beat (something I never thought I’d ever say?) and all sorts of devilishly unsubtle sounds thrown in. Although plausible to say that the, arguably random, sounds thrown in can detract from a song which on it’s own is a strong rock number – To create something that’s such a frantic mess when stripped apart but that sounds so impressive, and talented, when collated into a 3 minute piece is testament to the overall togetherness and talent of Awolnation.
One of Awolnation’s most accredited songs is ‘Sail’ – Whereas, as mentioned, this band’s speciality comes in their middle finger towards the norm, Sail is a very basic track. A catchy chorus, a straight forward introduction and a consistent template, the popularity from Sail stems from this quaint simplicity. It’s impressive, singalong, vocals make for a ridiculously catchy song.
‘All I Need’ steps back from everything. It’s a relaxing, beautifully sounding, song featuring the simplest of piano playing and the humble song writing of Aaron Bruno. Acting as a cool down from the previous 13 songs of chaos, All I Need is yet more proof of the diversity of Awolnation.
A band who impress just as much, if not more, live than on record, Awolnation taken the best aspect of electro rock and (what little good there is in) pop music and mashed it together to create a new, exciting and experimental sound.
For fans of:
Alex Clare | Jack White | MGMT