FITZ AND THE TANTRUMS – More Than Just A Dream
aaamusic | On 29, Jun 2014
Fitz And The Tantrums have been gaining momentum since their inception in 2008. After a debut album released in 2010 and a pretty extensive festival circuit in 2011, the band have now released their second album – More Than Just A Dream. Having not heard any of their music before, this review will be a totally fresh, objective opinion.
The album kicks off with the first single from it – ‘Out Of My League’. It’s chirpy and happy, and has an almost Hoosiers/Spector kind of vibe to it. The slightly out of tune “ooh”s at the start throw me off a bit, but it actually adds to the feel of the song. ‘Break The Walls’ comes up next – and I am again thrown. There’s a new singer thrown in that had absolutely no part in the first track [Noelle Scaggs]. She’s actually the co-lead singer, but her non-appearance in the previous track is confusing. Where’s the consistency?! The song itself is more of the same happy pop, and the drumming is really solid and has a good rhythm to it.
Second single from the album ‘The Walker’ has got a lot of sass in the vocals and a good walking rhythm, which gives the song somewhere to go. However, the chorus is slightly anti-climactic. It is clear where they’re trying to go with the song, but they don’t quite get there. ‘Spark’ has a bit of a Latin vibe to it in the bassline, and gets heavier as the song goes on. The section just before the chorus is dramatic and meaty, but the chorus itself again is disappointing and doesn’t live up to its potential. But it is a catchy song.
The bass in ‘6AM’ gives the track a bit of an 80s feel. It’s at this point in the album that I’m getting a bit weary from the vocal battle going on between the two main vocalists. Scaggs’ voice is not one of a backing singer and she clearly knows it, but it’s an even fight. If this is what they’re going for then great, but it’s kind of tiring. ‘Fools Gold’ has big, heavy drums that dominate the opening, it’s a really good sound. The melody is catchy, and the electric drums in the second verse give the song a bit of an edge. Think ‘LDN’ by Lily Allen when you listen to ‘Keepin Our Eyes Out’ – it’s got the same happy vibes, although it does drag on.
‘Last Raindrop’ is really heavy on the synths, and is, in all honesty, a bit cringey. As is ‘House On Fire’ – it just doesn’t really fit in with the rest of the album so far and gets a bit messy towards the end. ‘The End’ [ironically the third-to-last track] starts off well, but the chorus ruins it. ‘Get Away’ has a good rhythm and has a soul feel to it. Think Bruno Mars. And last but not least, ‘Merry Go Round’ is very reminiscent of Fun. and rounds off the album in a happy way.
All in all, it feels as though the album doesn’t really have much direction and is a bit of a mish-mash, but fans of Fitz And The Tantrums might love that about it.