AHEAD of Years & Years releasing their debut album in July, Quays News entertainment reporter Nathan Salt got his hands on an early copy…

The three piece British electronica Years & Years are about to release one of the most anticipated albums of the summer in the form of debut album ‘Communion’.

Catapulted into the eyes of mainstream music fans in March through number one record ‘King’, the alternative London trio’s stock has risen immeasurably since then with further singles such as ‘Shine’ reaching number one in the iTunes download charts this week.

‘Communion’ is a combination of a similar, almost enchanting, electropop sound driven by infectious synths concocted by Emre Turkman, hauntingly beautiful vocals by former Skins actor Olly Alexander and slick basslines from the final member Mikey Goldsworthy. Each of them brings something to this almost indie table; they clearly know the sound that works for them and the album reflects that with little variety in terms of style.

What ‘Communion’ does give fans is a solid electronic pop album which should definitely feature on many people’s wish list this summer.

 

When it was announced that Years & Years were the 2015 BBC Sound award winners the expectation level flew through the roof with former winners Disclosure and Sam Smith demonstrating just how high that award had set the bar.

Whilst not quite matching either of those immense talents just yet, Years and Years’ unique blend of stripped back acoustics such as ‘Memo’ and ‘Without’ provide balance to those festival-esque tracks that have become synonymous with the trio: ‘King’, ‘Desire’ and ‘Shine’.

The success of those three tracks in particular lies in their catchy choruses and a tendency to cross over to an R&B sound on the hook. If you haven’t heard ‘King’, firstly give it a listen and secondly have you been under a rock?! It is THE must have record for any summer holiday playlist with its irresistible feel good vibes.

Whilst those techno-pop, synth driven records are successful through the rhythmic patterns alone, the slower intense tracks showcase the confessional aspect to this album which has clearly allowed Alexander a chance to open up about love and romance – a typicality so clichéd amongst song writers in the industry it is unusual if love isn’t the central theme to any album.

‘Eyes Shut’, ‘Without’ and ‘Foundation’ provide an emotive narrative throughout the album with Alexander eloquently opening up about a relationship it seems which is particularly powerful on the latter where a chilling vocal dominates and captivates.

Where has the final star gone you may be asking yourself? The level of synth and track similarity is a flaw nearly all reviewers have noted over the past few days and whilst that is a sound that clearly is their niche, it is a particularly safe tactic. Both ‘Real’ and ‘Worship’ are in the mould of techno-pop but will leave you no more than melancholy after album highlights in the form of ‘King’ and ‘Desire’.

Out on Friday July 10 it’s an album that is certainly worth a purchase with an intriguing blend of easy listening ballads and chart-topping electropop. A trio that, from this record alone it is clear, are made for live performances and fans just have to wait until later on this year for their headline tour which visits Manchester’s Albert Hall in October.

It’s been five years in the making but the debut album is finally here and it’s not as bad as NME say it is, promise…

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