Luke James
Luke James

CLUNK Magazines chief album review guy and a lover of cats!

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Label: Royal Mountain Records

After a career spanning ten years and seven records, Islands’ Nick Thorburn quietly decided to put an end to the band in 2016. It is now five years later and, having been bitten by the creative bug, Islands have been resurrected with a newfound vigor and independence. Deciding to get an outside producer in for the first time and to work without a deadline, there is a sense of freedom in the new album ‘Islomania’, an album that is instantly infectious with its feel-good aura and uplifting atmosphere.

‘Islomania’ is indie-pop at its finest. Islands play with the style that bands such as Vampire Weekend, Beatenberg, and Passion Pit have been soundtracking summer with for years.

Opening with the laidback title track ‘Islomania’, Islands decides to ease you in rather than attack you straight away. This slow and easy approach is short-lived though as ‘(We Like To) Do It With The Lights On’ saunters in with a margarita in its hand begging you to dance along. Lyrically it’s a song about finding the good in life and this comes across in the music also with all its pop glory. ‘Carpenter’ leans more towards the Vampire Weekend end of the indie spectrum with singer Nick Thornburn sounding for all the world like Ezra Koenig. With songs like ‘Natural Law Party’ and ‘Never Let You Down’ helping to round off this collection of pure pop bliss, each song feels like a celebration. It almost feels like the joy of being back creating again is pouring through the music.

Taking some time away has really helped the band return with a fresh-faced enthusiasm that can be felt in every track. It’s an album that demands your attention, inviting you on a fun-filled journey, get your dancing shoes on as this is one bouncy, entertaining and light-hearted album. It’s great to see ISLAND back with such pomp and vigor.

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