Two years ago Chvrches topped our albums of the year list with their debut record, The Bones of What You Believe. In 2015 their second album might not feature quite so highly in our list, but it was nonetheless a sterling effort, confirming their reputation as the UK’s finest synth pop band. If Every Open Eye played safe, then it at least it consolidated and expanded their fan base, something which (arguably) comparable electronic acts such as Hurts and Little Boots failed to do (although here at Breaking More Waves we very much liked the second Little Boots album).
Yet whilst the template was more of the same, this record held its own by featuring a crop of songs that had punch and remained easily accessible, with just enough experimentation and oddness to ensure that their version of pop music didn’t become the homogenic paint by numbers blandness that litters up the majority of the charts. The songs on Every Open Eye still have something a little deeper to them, a little soul and bite, something that sadly another blog favourite, Ellie Goulding’s latest record lacked.
If the criticism of this album is that it doesn’t go far enough away from the first record, let’s remember this is only LP number two. Sure, if the band don’t slowly evolve and develop on future work there’s a likelihood we’ll all get bored, but frankly right here right now, when you’ve got songs as deliciously foot stomping and air punching as Clearest Blue or the delicious soft focus high energy disco pop of Empty Threat and banger after banger after banger, (when comedown track Afterglow arrives it feels really needed – a moment for rest and reflection ) you’d be churlish to complain.
“We will take the best parts of ourselves and make them gold,” Lauren Mayberry sings on fourth song Make Them Gold, and that is exactly what they have achieved on Every Open Eye.
Chvrches - Empty Threat (Video)