Label: Warner Records UK
Royal Blood needs little introduction. Ever since the heavy-hitting two-piece burst onto the scene, they’ve gone from strength to strength. With their earth trembling use of bass and drums, Royal Blood have been purveyors of heavy blues-oriented rock for their first two albums (‘How Did We Get So Dark’ and their self-titled debut) so ‘Typhoons’ came as something of a surprise when I hit play. Instead of the doom and gloom comes a blend of disco and funk!
Opener ‘Trouble’s Coming’ comes sliding onto the dance floor first with a sound that comes as something between the pop sensibility of The Killers newer material and the strutting funk of Parliament. It’s always a bold move to change your sound from such a significant one but Royal Blood has made it pay off and then some. ‘Limbo’ swaggers out drenched in the glow of a mirrorball. It almost comes off as a Justice remix of a Royal Blood track. It’s this willingness to throw themselves into their newfound style that lends a certain swagger to ‘Typhoons’. The title track and ‘Boilermaker’ are about as close as you get to Royal Blood’s former work but even these tracks have a stomp to them that will have you tapping your feet.
‘Typhoons’ is an album that oozes confidence and is an album that you can tell Royal Blood has spent a lot of time on to get just right rather than throw out another hard rock album which would’ve been easy enough. There’s even something approaching a pop chorus in ‘Who Needs Friends!’ The production is crisp and there’s plenty going on in the background with synth’s and backing vocals to reward repeat listens. Not that you would need convincing to listen to ‘Typhoons’ again!
‘Typhoons’ is a far cry from Royal Blood’s previous work but that is not a bad thing. It shows growth and a desire to transform, qualities which some band’s at their level lack. While a change in direction can sometimes split a fan base and lose fans, I can assure you that they’ve gained a new fan here.