Review #85: Florence + the Machine – How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful

Artist – Florence + the Machine
Album – How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful (2015)

Check it out – https://open.spotify.com/album/2jn2n5OkuHliOLKCqHnjXV

Florence + the Machine are an indie/art-rock band from London, UK. The group are led by Florence Welch – lead vocalist and Isabella Summers – keyboardist, which bring an array of musicians as their back up band. The band have won and been nominated for numerous awards over the course of their first 2 albums ‘Lungs’ and ‘Ceremonials’ including awards for Best Album at the Brits and Best New Artist at the Grammys. With the release of their 3rd album ‘How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful’ Florence + the Machine managed to reach a performance milestone, headlining Glastonbury festival due to the unfortunate circumstance of Foo Fighters lead man Dave Grohl breaking his leg and dropping out. Any way, here’s the new album.

‘How Big …’ along with the rest of Florence + the Machine’s back catalogue is beautifully orchestrated, displaying a range of string instruments, brass, percussion and the usual band set up. This range of orchestral instrumentation creates a large and epic sound, harmonising melodies with each other and intertwining these melodies to captivate the listener. Florence’s voice compliments the melodies and chords produced by the music perfectly, acting almost like another finely tuned instrument in the orchestra, she imparts a large and dynamic range and an expertly pitched vibrato when required. A couple personal favourites of mine are the intro track ‘Ship To Wreck’, due to its more pop like sound than the usual bands music (plus its similarity in sound to The Cure), and the song ‘St.Jude’, due to its more sombre tone and calm feeling in a epic album.

‘How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful’ is another great album to go along with Florence + the Machine’s previous 2 great albums. It grows in its inclusion of slightly more upbeat rockier tracks, but also keeps true to its roots with its massive scale in orchestration, sing-a-long choruses and tranquil moments.

8/10

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