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Thursday, June 1, 2023


Band strengthens style in latest album

Since the release of their first album, “Tourist History” in 2010, Northern Ireland’s Two Door Cinema Club has grown in the European music scene and hits American shores with their new album “Beacon.”

Two Door Cinema Club has grown from being a small indie band playing small venues to headlining festivals across Europe.

They recently gave Houston a glimpse of their new tracks when they stopped by in July for Free Press Summer Fest.

The band is also set to appear at The House of Blues on Oct. 12.

“Beacon” introduces new instruments — strings and air — to Two Door’s tracks, attempting to add some tenacity for fans used to the standard bass, guitar and drum kit. This is a clear example in the first track of the album “Next Year,” which opens with a synthesizer and then reverts to the norms of the band’s style as they lyrically talk about the constant touring.

The track “Handshake” features a synthesizer that not only opens the track, but uses the rhythm guitar to add the pulsating dance beat that the band is known for. The track is reminiscent of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs.

The album itself also incorporates a more disco-styled synthesizer that is now commonly used by M83 and Sigur Ros.

It does not always work well for the album, though. “Sun” has a horrific, mundane tone that only declines even further by the band’s experiment with wind acoustics. Their poor attempt at stylish riffing is also an added negative.

The riffing does improve with “Wake Up.” Already a catchy dance track, the amplified electricity of the guitar makes for some really brilliant moments in the song.

Although these elements do change the sound of the band, “Sleep Alone” should serve Two Door’s fans well with the pulsating cymbals and drums followed by the rhythm guitar. The vocals jump to the chorus and the song has remarkable lyrical structure.

“The World Is Watching” can be considered the album’s version of a more mature 2011 single, “What You Know.” The love song style of the track is a reminder of other indie bands such as Young the Giant and Grouplove, but the band still holds their own.

The band has matured since their first album given their improved use of instrumentation and serious tone.

“Beacon” is a great album that can take over smaller venues and music festivals.

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