In a wave of on-coming electronic acts, CHVRCHES are the ones that manage to stand out. Their bright, infections synth melodies are unmistakable, and Lauren Mayberry’s high-pitched voice carries a kind of innocence that makes their darker lyrics even more striking. It’s a formula that got them onto almost a dozen best album lists at the end of 2013 with The Bones of What You Believe, and after listening to the latest single Clearest Blue, it seems like it will lead Every Open Eye to a similar fate.
Clearest Blue follows the CHVRCHES formula almost perfectly. The beat and looping melodies of the intro are extremely reminiscent of those from We Sink, a song off of their first album, giving it a similarly water-like quality. The song’s defining moment comes at the start of its second half; Mayberry’s echoing shout—Will you meet me more than halfway up?—leads into a more pronounced melody, doubling the song’s energy and making it much more enjoyable. Clearest Blue sacrifices the benefit of a chorus, but its two-part production places the focus of the song on its stunning transition, and in turn makes it stronger.
CHVRCHES are aware that they have a formula that serves them well. Clearest Blue is well and truly a song in their signature style, and one that proves they can recycle a few elements of their music while still finding ways to adequately freshen it up. It’s a taste of the potential Every Open Eye has to be an amazing album, if not one that’s too familiar for its own good.