Augustines have always dreamed big and it has paid off. After opening for Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds on their recent tour and headline shows including the Brixton Academy in London, there is no stopping them.
Augustines’ third record This Is Your Life was only revealed a few days ago. Anticipation is high and so is expectation. Although the album’s release is still a month away (it drops on June 10th) we were given the opportunity to have a first listen and share with you some of our first impressions.
Are We Alive
The album opener was also the first single and has been a constant in Augustines’ live set for the past year. Are We Alive is a powerful guitar driven track with McCarthy’s signature belting vocals layered on top.
When Things Fall Apart
When Things Fall Apart was released as a single a few days ago. It sees the band head in a poppier direction with a heavy use of synths and an instantly catchy chorus. It has a bit of a Queen vibe to it (Radio Gaga). I’m still a bit undecided about this one.
The Forgotten Way
The Forgotten Way is a ballad and an instant favourite of mine. It is piano rather than guitar driven and features subtle string arrangements. I’m curious how this will translate live.
Running In Place
Running In Place is a power ballad. It features a choir, synths and drum machines in the chorus. Personally, I’m not overly fond of this stadium-sized production. The background vocals provided by Senegalese duo Pape & Cheikh give it a world music touch (a bit like Cruel City) which is a nice addition.
May You Keep Well
May You Keep Well is another ballad. Once again, I feel a bit undecided about the drum machine but otherwise it’s a lovely song. Pape & Cheikh once more provide atmospheric backing vocals.
Landmine is easily my favourite so far. Those who went to one of Billy’s solo dates will have heard it there. Landmine is a beautiful ballad with stripped down instrumentation and a crescendo towards the end.
Hold Me Loneliness
Hold Me Lonelines is yet another ballad. This one features prominent strings and is mostly piano driven. Drum machines are used once again but also some interesting vocal effects.
No Need To Explain
In many ways, No Need To Explain is a typical Augustines song, at least compared to their previous albums. It’s also one of the more guitar driven and upbeat tracks on the record.
This Is Your Life
The title track is another instant favourite. By the times the drums kick in I was hooked. This one is also very much Augustines and I’m sure it will be amazing live when the audience sings the lyrics back at them. This is your life!
Days Roll By
Days Roll By is a power ballad that brings back the synths one last time. It’s an obvious closer and rounds the album off nicely.
Of course, this is only a very preliminary first impression of Augustines’ new record. Check back closer to release for a full review of This Is Your Life.
Augustines will play a run of festival shows across the UK and Europe this summer. A more extensive tour is planned for later in the year. Watch this space for further details. Confirmed dates can be found below.
Also published on Medium.