Psyence Go Big On Sophomore Album ‘L.I.F.E’

Lessons In Forgetting Everything or simply L.I.F.E is the name of the second studio album by Psyence, an alternative quintet from Staffordshire, West Midland. This record embraces the familiarity of this band’s sound while introducing new and captivating ideas.

Psyence – L.I.F.E.

A project that started as a collaborative effort between school friends soon became a force to be reckoned with in the UK’s independent scene. Following two EPs and a self-titled LP in 2019, Psyence’s sophomore album is the culmination of two years of hard work and resilience to a relentless pandemic.

But what makes this musical work so special? Well, keep reading and join me on this sonorous venture to find out!

The first official single and opener of this record Domino starts this work on a high note, with distorted riffs accompanied by electronic sounds which pave the way for a blasting and energetic chorus.

Tracks like So High and Warpaint utilize a more traditional Rock structure, consisting of pulsating drums and a tight bass line.

Go It Alone takes advantage of the splendid combo guitar/synth to create an absorbing atmosphere, culminating with a mind-blowing guitar solo.

Sugar Sweet turns the table, dropping the intensity on this one by adding more danceable and groovy elements. The synths have more time to shine while showcasing this band’s versatile aural arsenal.

But fear not, because the wild riffs and explosiveness return in Nobody Understands, except that this time, the lyrics are some of the most intimately crushing that this outfit has developed to date, being a track regarding mental health, delivered from a first-person point of view.

Wonderview Avenue introduces retro-stylized synths followed by Steve’s soft and almost angelic vocals, evoking feelings of nostalgia and yearning. Meanwhile, Houston falls into a classic Hard-rock pattern, sounding like a heavier and frantic Kasabian.

Don’t Fear The Rapture is a melting pot of sonic eclecticism, with the early chords displaying shades of New Wave, connecting with Steve’s vulnerable vocals, building into a smashing chorus where the title of this song is declaimed emphatically.

The final tune of this album Brighter Days leans toward the Psychedelic vein, bringing an epic presentation with long and cathartic guitar passages, slowly drifting away into a satisfactory nothingness.

L.I.F.E is a cohesive offering, beautifully produced and with enough cleverness to keep you guessing how the next track will sound.

There is a little bit of everything on this record to satisfy even the fanciest people, from the meaningful themes to the varied influences and of course, the astonishing performances. Edgy when it needs to and still human enough to show fragility. Psyence has crafted a magnificent work that will give a lot to talk about.

You can catch Psyence live next November 13th at the Shiine Festival in Minehead.

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Words Javier Rodriguez