Pianist, songwriter and vocalist, Tom Odell’s second album has been much anticipated. After the success of his debut, Long Way Down, Odell had a great deal to live up to and the anticipation was increased with multiple singles from Wrong Crowd being released in preparation of the record.
The album opens with a title track. Odell’s trademark piano riffs begin followed by his husky but lyrical voice. The tempo and dynamics both crescendo into a whistled interlude. The track is strangely captivating and sets up the album nicely.
Magnetised, the second track and one of the most highly acclaimed singles to be taken from the album follows. The song is a far cry from much of Odell’s previous works. While still featuring his trusty piano, the accompaniment is far more reliant on other instruments. This ‘rockier’ side to Odell does, however, work well.
‘Here I am’ is a personal favourite. Not only do the vocals strike an easily relatable chord, but the punchy vocals and piano chords are both uplifting and catchy. ‘Baby could you love me some more’ is repeated over and over along with ‘going out of my head here darling’ before they are overlapped which produces an extremely effective texture.
The album ends on a far more sombre tone, ‘I Thought I Knew What Love Was’ reminds us of his vocal capabilities. The song is stripped back, although still incredibly melodic. He sings: ‘I thought I knew what love was until I met you.’ The ambiguity of the track continues and ends fairly abruptly. The listener is left to ponder, while the lyrics circle their head- a clever and creative piece of songwriting.
Wrong Crowd, is a lengthy album, it is clear that the past few years have certainly been busy. Yet, this makes it impossible to give a track by track review. I have but only touched on a few of the most striking tracks on the record. The album is expected to be well received and certainly appeals to a wide variety of audiences. While Wrong Crowd not particularly new or innovative, it is, nonetheless, a strong second album that does justice to Tom Odell’s undoubted talent.By Rachel Moore