I first listened to Florence + the Machine’s new album, Ceremonials, when it came out October 2011. I did not enjoy it at first, but I enjoyed it more as time went on. Even still, I’m having a hard time picking individual songs to share.
Ceremonials doesn’t grab me the same way Lungs did. The newer album has a few tremendous songs on it, but there are a few more bores on it than on Lungs.
Either way, I still absolutely adore Florence + the Machine’s brand of soulful indie pop.
Take Shake It Out for instance. She keeps the tradition of beautiful and stylized music videos that engage the viewer in every single frame. It seems like it’s inspired by early 1980s New Romantic, but marginally bleaker.
The song still has the same beautiful singing, but is plagued by repetitive shouting of “shake it out” with intermittent words that you cannot remember because she yells out the song title so often.
What else could one expect from a single from an artist after she gets extremely popular? Of course, they’d want to water it down and try to appeal to even more people.
No Light, No Light is another track that I’m strangely addicted to. It has enough of the right kind of bellowing to keep me listening.
This is the beautiful sort of music that I’ve come to know and love from Florence + the Machine. The video is a treat for your eyes, the contrast is illuminating.
I’m also a big fan of people falling. There are scenes where she’s just free-falling through the air, which is a technique that has always resonated with me.
There isn’t much to say about the video for What the Water Gave Me. It is comprised mostly of studio recording and random shots of Florence singing.
The song is pretty good, and has a different vibe from the previous two. It has more force and maintains a stronger presence. It doesn’t feel as ethereal, but really pumps in those soul influences.
Her voice is amazing, but not all of her songs are. What makes a Florence + the Machine album is how well she utilizes her talents. The music behind it can usually fit well with whatever she does.