For those who have come to Noah and The Whale through their first two albums Peaceful, the World Lays Me Down (2008) and The First Days of Spring (2009) Last Night on Earthwill be a different listening experience for you.
Gone are the indie folk almost dark sounds replaced with an upbeat shall I say, radio friendly bunch of tunes.
Charlie Fink’s vocals still have the same quality, although not as quirkily folky, the stripped down acoustic instrumentation of the first two albums is substituted by a more full, produced band sound.
The songs are catchy enough and lyrically the turns of phrase are still there, if not as left of centre. The band on
this album appear to be leaving the indie folk label behind for at least the time being.
I can see these songs fitting in well with material from the earlier albums in live performance, however as an album I would love to hear some of the more darker aspects that lay within that earlier material interspersed with some of these newer tracks.
It’s a hard thing matching the odd gloomy lyric with an up tempo tune but not impossible and to some extent the band pull this off. The song arrangements which have always been a strong point of this band are still prominently well done here.
An artist has to progress within themselves, there will be those who will embrace this new direction and others who will yearn for the sounds of the first two albums.
Either way Noah and The Whale have managed to hang on to their integrity even with this change in direction.