For the last two or three months, I’ve been thinking about the future of pop music and pop bands alike. Clearly the 1975 have received a lot of mainstream attention from fans with the last release of I like it when you sleep…, but from my understanding, two bands with female vocalists come to mind when talking about the future of pop. One is Hey Violet who released their debut From the Outside earlier this summer. The second is PVRIS who, in August, released their sophomore full-length effort entitled All We Know Of Heaven, All We Need Of Hell. I know, it sounds extra and flashy, but I promise this album shows some serious framework for moving on past the trios lovely debut White Noise and on to the next chapter.
In order to fully love AWKOHAWNOH it needs to be understood that this album isn’t White Noise. Whereas their debut was very loud with an in-your-face attitude (see: “My House”), this new record sacrifices a lot of the standout qualities of the debut’s best tracks in order to make a better full album. The album’s three openers “Heaven,” “Half,” and “Anyone Else” flow into each other very well. If they wanted, they could all be one single twelve-minute song. It’s not until “What’s Wrong” that we see much angst-filled emotion from frontwoman Lyndsey Gunnulfsen, which is an incredible song that could easily take place as a fan-favorite single destined for airplay on alternative radio.
Deeper into AWKOHAWNOH is where some of the more pop-focused tracks concede within. “Same Soul” is a personal favorite, but something that bothers me is the main chorus line, “I’m just a body that you used to know,” which has direct similarities to Gotye’s “Somebody That You Used To Know.” Another favorite is the following cut, “Winter,” which in mood terms, offers the same that “Same Soul” does. Something that struck me as odd with “Winter” is that it’s very melodic and the pop-ness of the track has so much potential but the chorus falls flat in terms of how big it could be. I still definitely adore the song, but a lot of these songs actually have that same disappointing quality to them where they could blow up so big, but might not since there’s no capitalization on some of these.
Much of this album is definitely good and personally, I like it more than White Noise but I’m definitely not seeing fans have the same hype that they did with the previous. I can see this as an in-between album; something PVRIS is proud of, but anything coming in the future will be lightyears ahead.
PVRIS – All We Know Of Heaven, All We Need Of Hell
Release: August 25, 2017 – Rise Records
Replay Worthy: “What’s Wrong”